Florida meat processor cited for safety/health violations

RP news wires, Noria Corporation
Tags: workplace safety

The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has proposed $59,950 in penalties against Henry's Hickory House, a Jacksonville, Fla., meat processor, for violating federal safety and health standards.

"OSHA will act when employers fail to take the steps necessary to protect the safety and health of their employees," said James Borders, director of OSHA's Jacksonville Area Office.

The agency issued four repeat citations and proposed $45,000 in penalties against the company for failing to conduct proper lockout/tagout procedures on production equipment, and for failing to maintain OSHA records as required by law. The company was cited for these same violations after a 2005 inspection. Lockout/tagout procedures are intended to prevent machinery from functioning while employees perform maintenance.

Four serious safety violations were uncovered, including the lack of lockout/tagout procedures specific to each piece of machinery, not providing machine guarding, not correcting electrical hazards and failing to repair a broken eyewash station. Proposed penalties totaled $10,950 for these violations.

Eight other-than-serious violations also were found, including three recordkeeping violations, resulting in $4,000 in proposed penalties.

The company has 15 working days to contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

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