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GA company wracks up (almost) A-Z violations

May 30, 2012
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OSHAWhen OSHA inspectors responded to complaints inspected a frozen food manufacturing facility in Brunshwick, GA, they found that their trip was not wasted.

 Rich Products Corp. was assessed nearly two dozen citations and proposed penalties of $80,385 as a result of the agency visit.

What is noteworthy is the array of safety and health hazards found by inspectors.

The company was cited for exposing workers to slipping hazards due to wet floors; fall hazards due to holes in the floor around equipment on elevated platforms; workplace entry and exit hazards due to missing signs; an unsafe ammonia refrigeration system due to incomplete process safety information  and amputation and electrical hazards from not completely guarding process equipment. Additional violations involve a failure to ensure workers were using personal protective equipment, including goggles, face shields and gloves while working with corrosive chemicals; audit the process safety management program; lockout/tagout procedures completely isolated energy sources; post warning signs; and permit partial hindrance to exit routes and protect workers from hot piping and missing guardrails on elevated platforms.

The company was also cited for failing to correctly document the current implemented safeguards; determine the severity of consequences on the process hazard analysis checklist for the ammonia refrigeration system; and annually certify the current and accurate status of operating procedures throughout the ammonia refrigeration system, so that it does not use fixed wiring for the recirculation vessel.

Rich Products Corp., which operates 18 food-processing facilities throughout the United States and is a leading supplier of nondairy and frozen food to food-service, in-store bakeries, retail and industrial marketplaces, has 15 business days from receipt of the 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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