The Department of Labor's safety administration says 34 of the violations could have caused death or serious physical harm.
Some of the employees who would be out of work were already furloughed earlier this year because of sequestration.
World War II and Vietnam veterans recalled their stories as prisoners of war during a ceremony at Naval Surface Warfare Center Crane on Thursday.
The Battery Innovation Center works to make lithium batteries used in both military and civilian technology more efficient and longer-lasting.
Crane employees are being forced to take 11 unpaid furloughs days from July to September.
Col. Dixon attended IU before joining the Indiana Army National Guard as an infantryman.
Civilian employees have until June 4 to make a case for why they should be exempt from the furloughs.
While proponents say the idea could bring jobs and money to the state, those against it worry about the safety risks.
Crane employees are facing one day of unpaid furlough per week because of sequestration.
The Office of Defense Development will be located in Bloomington.