AP Photo/Paul Sakuma

Official: Tesla factory had previous violation

The San Francisco Bay Area Tesla factory where three workers were burned by hot metal was previously cited for a safety violation that led to an injury, a state official said Thursday.

The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health fined Tesla $2,700 last year for a serious violation at the Fremont factory that was uncovered during an accident investigation.

Agency spokesman Peter Melton said investigators found a hydraulic power press did not have a proper stop control. At least one person was injured, but Melton did not know the extent of the injuries.

Tesla was also fined for an accident at a different area facility two years ago in which a worker lost a fingertip.

Two of the three Tesla Motors workers who were burned when a machine malfunctioned at the Fremont factory remained hospitalized on Thursday.

One employee was seriously hurt and two others sustained minor injuries on Wednesday when a low-pressure aluminum casting press at the Fremont plant spilled hot metal, said Greg Siggins, a spokesman for Cal-OSHA.

“Hot metal somehow burned the workers,” Siggins said.

The most seriously injured worker sustained upper-body burns, Melton said.

All three workers were taken to Santa Clara Valley Medical Center in San Jose.

Hospital spokeswoman Joy Alexiou said two remained hospitalized and one was released Wednesday. She declined to disclose their identities or conditions due to privacy laws.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk visited the workers on Wednesday at the hospital.

The incident was being treated as an industrial accident, Siggins said.

“We will be talking to any witnesses, reviewing training documents and manuals to see if they are in accordance with specifications as part of finding out what happened,” Siggins said.

Tesla Motors, headquartered in Palo Alto, makes its all-electric Model S sedan at the Fremont factory that was previously owned by General Motors and Toyota.

Tesla took ownership of the plant four years ago and has transformed a portion of the cavernous site into a state-of-the-art facility.

The latest accident followed recent Tesla car fires in Washington state, Tennessee and Mexico that made headlines. Two Model S sedans caught fire after hitting a metal object in the road and a third caught fire after a high-speed chase.

None of the drivers was injured.

Musk has said there are no plans for a recall and insisted the Model S is one of the safest cars on the road.Cal/OSHACaliforniaCalifornia NewsTesla Motors

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

SFMTA cuts wellness program for Muni operators during pandemic

BackFirst provided preventative care for chronic disease plus help with diet, exercise and stress

California’s troubled unemployment agency needs immediate overhaul, report says

By Patrick McGreevy Los Angeles Times California’s antiquated unemployment benefits system requires… Continue reading

In Brown Type: New survey finds engagement and trend to progressivism among Asian American voters

The 2016 election and ‘Trump effect’ have fired up the voting bloc

Ruth Bader Ginsburg, liberal giant of the Supreme Court, dies

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who championed women’s rights — first as a… Continue reading

Four officers found to have committed misconduct escape discipline

Four officers who should have been punished for misconduct escaped discipline because… Continue reading

Most Read