Spirit Aerosystems responds to OSHA citiation

WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited aircraft manufacturer Spirit Aerosystems Inc. for exposing employees to hexavalent chromium, a known carcinogen.

The company faces proposed penalties totaling $194,006 for one willful and five serious violations.

OSHA investigators say Spirit exposed employees to airborne concentrations of hexavalent chromium nearly two times the permissible exposure limit.

The department says Spirit failed to prevent exposure, conduct monitoring or sampling, provide training, or require employees to properly remove potentially contaminated personal protective equipment and clothing before leaving the sanding area.

Spirit acknowledged it received the citation but said it disputes the accuracy of some of OSHA's findings.

"Spirit does not believe any of its employees have been exposed to improper levels of HC," said the company. "Nonetheless, Spirit has already begun taking steps to correct many of the issues described in the citations and looks forward to collaborating with OSHA to ensure its compliance with all OSHA regulations moving forward."

Spirit says it will exercise its right to an informal conference with OSHA to discuss the issues and seek reductions of the penalties and classifications of the citations.

"The safety and well-being of our employees is our top priority, and we remain committed to driving an ever-stronger safety culture at Spirit," the company concluded.