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US - N.H. foundry fined $250K by OSHA

The owner of a metal foundry in Franklin, N.H., has formally contested a fine of more than $250,000 by the federal government after tests showed lead particle levels more than three times the legal limit inside the building.

John Wiehl questioned whether airborne lead particles are any more dangerous than fast food restaurants or poor diets. The Concord Monitor reports he said he's melted and poured metal alongside workers on the floor of the Franklin Non-Ferrous Foundary for more than 20 years without side effects.

He says discussions with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration have been amicable. The citations say in March, a factory foreman was found to have high levels of lead in his blood. Wiehl declined to comment on that case.

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