Three different OSHA inspections at one bakery – stemming from three different causes – ended with 49 citations issued for a variety of health and safety violations.
One inspection of the Lone Star Bakery, Inc. came on the heels of a fingertip amputation on the pie processing line in October of 2010. Another began two months later, after a fire at the facility caused by excessive buildup of bread materials in the ovens. A report that employees who were being exposed to excessive levels of noise were not protected by a hearing conservation program brought OSHA in for yet another inspection.
The result? Thirty-two serious, one repeat and 16 other-than-serious violations against the company’s China Grove operation, with proposed penalties totaingl $229,400.
"Employees were exposed to many hazards, including excessive accumulations of combustible flour dust that could have ignited and caused serious injuries," said Jeff Funke, OSHA's area director in San Antonio.
The serious violations include failing to ensure that employees were protected from falls; to clean combustible dust from workroom floors and other surfaces; to cover drain openings; to ensure that exits were free from obstructions and unlocked; and to ensure electrical deficiencies were corrected
The repeat violation is failing to ensure that a metal junction box was permanently mounted in accordance with the listing and labeling required by the manufacturer.
Other-than-serious violations include failing to record each work-related injury or illness case that met general recording criteria, and complete an incident report form for each work-related injury or illness case that met the general recording criteria for both locations from 2007 to 2010.
Lone Star Bakery is a private commercial bakery that employs about 500 workers at two China Grove facilities.