OSHA proposes more than $16.6 million in fines for Kleen Energy explosion

OSHA this week proposed $16.6 million in fines for 371 alleged safety violations related to the deadly Kleen Energy Systems LLC power plant explosion earlier this year.

Six workers were killed in the Feb. 7 blast at the Middletown, CT, facility during an operation in which natural gas was pumped through lines to clear out debris. The Chemical Safety Board has urged the energy industry to stop the use of "gas blows" and similar operations, calling them "inherently unsafe."

The proposed OSHA penalty -- assessed to three different companies and 14 site contractors -- is the second-largest amount the agency has issued this fiscal year.

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