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Wednesday, May 19, 2010 - 8:39am

OSHA Cites Major Kia Supplier for Serious Violations

Federal health and safety officials are proposing more than $130,000 in fines against a Kia auto supplier in LaGrange. 

Sewon America, Inc. has been cited for more than a dozen safety violations.  It follows an Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) inspection of the plant in March after the agency received a complaint.

The two most serious violations are labeled as “willfull” by OSHA--defined as those committed with intentional disregard or plain indifference to employees safety and health. 

Those violations-- failure to provide workers with adequate hand protection, and to protect workers from arc welding flash burns.

An OSHA official says management is aware of the safety issues and needs to take action.  The company has 15 days to respond to and/or contest the report.  

A message for comment from company officials has not been returned. 

Sewon America began production at its LaGrange plant late last year.  The company makes chassis and car body components for Kia Motors in west Georgia.