OSHA Fines Food Processor $88K after Severe Injuries

September 21, 2016

2 Min Read
OSHA Fines Food Processor $88K after Severe Injuries

The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued citations to poultry processing producer, Koch Foods of Mississippi LLC, Morton, MS, on Sept. 16, 2016, for nine serious safety violations.

OSHA initiated two investigations after learning two workers suffered injuries in the spring of 2016. In March, a 42-year-old man suffered a laceration to his right finger after his glove got caught in a conveyor. In April, a 23-year-old gizzard chiller operator had two fingers on her right hand broken. The woman was attempting to unjam the gizzards inside the chiller when her hand contacted a rotating shaft. The investigation is also part of the agency's Regional Emphasis Program for Poultry Processing Facilities.

OSHA issued the serious citations to the employer for its failure to:

•    Ensure proper procedures were followed to prevent machinery from starting-up during maintenance or servicing
•    Protect employees from falls up to 18 ft
•    Provide machine guarding on equipment
•    Provide standard railings on stairways
•    Protect workers from electric shock due to corrosive chemicals leaking on outlets

Proposed penalties are $88,632.

"Koch Foods must review its safety procedures to ensure workers are protected from all safety and health hazards to include machinery unexpectedly starting up, falls and electric shock," said Eugene Stewart, OSHA's area director in the Jackson Office. "It is the employer's responsibility to protect employees in the workplace."

Headquartered in Park Ridge, IL, Koch Foods of Mississippi is a subsidiary of Koch Foods Inc., a leading poultry processor with facilities in AL, GA, OH, and TN. The employer has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, request a conference with OSHA's area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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