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Local

OSHA fines TPI $150,000 for workplace safety violations

DES MOINES (AP) — TPI Composites, a wind turbine blades manufacturer in Newton, has been fined nearly $155,000 for multiple workplace safety violations.

The Des Moines Register reports that Iowa’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration levied the fines against TPI for violations at its Newton plant. The violations included fire hazards, airborne contaminants, faulty record keeping, fall hazards and a lack of employee training.

The citations support complaints from dozens of former workers who say TPI didn’t properly protect them from dangerous chemicals that caused them severe skin injuries. TPI is one of Newton’s largest employers with approximately 1,100 workers. The company is preparing to add a bus body division to supply California-based Proterra with up to 3,350 bus bodies over a five-year period. TPI officials say the bus body work will add another 350 jobs.

Some workers say they were fired after reporting the injuries. The company said Friday it was evaluating OSHA’s findings and that safety is a core value of the company. Six former employees are suing the company.

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