OSHA cites Syracuse bakery, proposes $120K fine

RP news wires, Noria Corporation
Tags: workplace safety

A wide range of safety and health hazards at a Syracuse, N.Y., bakery has resulted in $120,600 in proposed fines from the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

Penny Curtiss Baking Company Inc., which manufactures bread and other bakery products, was cited for a total of 42 alleged serious safety and health hazards at its 1810 Lemoyne Avenue production plant following an OSHA inspection begun in July in response to an employee complaint.

OSHA's inspection found blocked exit routes; deficiencies in the facility's emergency response plan; fall and tripping hazards; lack of procedures, training and equipment to lock out the power sources of machines before performing maintenance; unguarded moving machine parts; unsafe operation of forklifts; and numerous electrical hazards.

Also identified were hazards associated with lack of personal protective equipment, work in confined spaces, welding, chemical hazard communication, lack of an emergency eyewash station, unsecured gas cylinders, failing to provide medical exams and surveillance as well as respirator fit testing to members of the bakery's hazardous materials response team and failing to provide hearing tests for employees as well as retraining and refitting them with appropriate hearing protection. OSHA issues a serious citation when death or serious physical harm is likely to result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.

"Left uncorrected, these conditions expose employees to the hazards of falls, electrocution, being caught in moving machine parts, or in the accidental startup of machinery, burns, hearing loss, exposure to hazardous substances, or being struck by forklifts," said Chris R. Adams, OSHA's area director in Syracuse. "It's imperative for this employer to correct these hazards before employees are injured or killed."

The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and fines to request and participate in an informal conference with OSHA or to contest them before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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