Bluescope Steel Occupational Health & Safety Management

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BlueScope Steel Occupational Health & Safety Management

Occupational Health & Safety OSHA at BlueScope Steel


BlueScope Steel is a flat product steel producer with operations in Australia, New Zealand, Asia, the Pacific and North America. It was spun off from BHP Billiton in 2002 as BHP Steel and renamed BlueScope Steel on 17 November 2003. Its Australian Securities Exchange code is BSL. The corporate headquarters are located in the Bluescope Steel Centre at 120 Collins Street, Melbourne. BlueScope Steel employs 17,500 personnel currently. It has its largest operating plant, an integrated steelworks, at Port Kembla, near Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia, with an annual production of 5 million tonnes of steel. Major products include steel slab, hot rolled coil, steel plate, automotive steel, galvanised steel, corrugated galvanised iron, "ZINCALUME" brand (55% aluminium-zinc) coated steel, and "COLORBOND" brand pre-painted steel. Tinplate production ceased in March 2007. (Stone 1995)


This inspection for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) was initiated as a result of a three-item, worker health and safety complaint. The complaint items included the following: employees working on the sprue line (shakeout) were overexposed to crystalline silica, and employees working on the melt deck were overexposed to carbon monoxide and metals (including copper). (Maxwell 2003)


BlueScope Steel is a ductile and malleable iron foundry primarily manufacturing hardware for the mining industry. It is a major producer of mine roof expansion anchors. It also produces products for the automotive, natural gas, and tool industries. BlueScope Steel employs 85 people in the Syracuse area and 5000 people nationwide.

The melt deck at the facility operates with five workers and utilizes three cupola furnaces on the first shift where the metal is melted and poured into molds. A sprue line, also known as the shakeout, is located in a separate but adjacent room remote from the melt deck. Ten employees work the sprue line on the first shift, with six to eight working on second shift when there are enough castings to operate it. The sprue line is a vibrating conveyor system designed to shake and to break out the castings from the sand molds. (Lovric & Morgan 2004)

Other areas in the facility include a shell core room where core molds are made using treated sand, a storage area, and several maintenance shops. The complaint items covered exposures on the sprue line and melt deck. Two years previously in an OSHA inspection, the Agency had monitored the sprue line and found overexposures to crystalline silica, which BlueScope Steel had successfully corrected.


The purpose of this study is to analyze Occupational Health & Safety issues at BlueScope Steel in Australia. For this purpose,we will suggest two pro-active strategies in the main body of the report and will include some recommendations at the end of the report. (Maxwell 2003)


Initially, an opening conference was held with BlueScope Steel where the complaint items were reviewed, and a copy of the complaint was provided to the employer. OSHA-required programs were requested and ...
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