OSHA Levies Heavy Penalties on NOX US After Continued Safety Failures
NOX US LLC—the Ohio-based vinyl tile manufacturing arm of South Korea's NOX Corp.—is once again under scrutiny by OSHA for recurrent safety violations.

In a release dated August 24, OSHA revealed that recent investigations into NOX US's Fostoria, Ohio, plant resulted in the identification of a total of ten violations and $545,853 in proposed penalties. These include the lack of necessary safety guards on machinery, which led to a 56-year-old machine operator suffering a finger amputation in February 2023. Other violations include deficiencies in lockout and tagout procedures and insufficient worker training.

This is not the first brush with OSHA for NOX US. In October 2022, OSHA flagged similar safety failures at the same plant and proposed penalties totaling $1.2 million, a matter NOX US is currently contesting. Since 2017, 14 workers have experienced injuries, with many instances of severe amputations at the Fostoria facility. This consistent breach of safety norms led OSHA to place the plant under its Severe Violator Enforcement Program that same year.

"Despite repeated citations and penalties, the company continues to expose employees to dangerous hazards and allows them to operate unguarded machines," OSHA Regional Administrator Bill Donovan in Chicago said in a statement. "NOX US is failing to meet their legal responsibility to provide employees with a safe and healthy work environment, and they must change the way it operates before another employee is needlessly injured."

Founded by NOX Corp. in November 2015, the Fostoria plant currently employs about 200 people and is a significant contributor to the company's global vinyl flooring production, serving customers across over 50 countries.

NOX US now has 15 business days to comply, seek an informal discussion with OSHA, or challenge the agency’s findings.