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UCLA appeals state findings in fatal lab fire

UCLA has appealed state regulators' findings of serious workplace-safety violations in the fatal burning of a staff research assistant last year in a lab fire.

The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health found last month that Sheri Sangji, 23, was not properly trained and was not wearing protective clothing Dec. 29 when an experiment with air-sensitive chemicals burst into flames.

University officials say they have made the required changes and have paid the more than $31,000 in fines assessed by regulators.

Kevin Reed, vice chancellor for legal affairs, said the May 26 appeal will allow UCLA to stipulate that it admits no fault in connection with Cal/OSHA's findings, a move aimed at limiting the university's liability.

Read the full story here.

--Kim Christensen

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