Region 4 News Release: 13-149-ATL
Feb. 11, 2013
Contact: Michael D'Aquino
US Labor Department's OSHA cites Jacksonville, Fla.-based
Bacardi Bottling following death of temporary worker on 1st day
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Bacardi Bottling Corp. with 12 alleged safety violations following the death of a 21-year-old temporary worker his first day on the job. Lawrence Daquan "Day" Davis was crushed to death by a palletizer machine at the Jacksonville facility in August 2012. The company uses Remedy Intelligent Staffing as a temporary staffing service to provide laborers for certain types of jobs.
"A worker's first day at work shouldn't be his last day on earth," said Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Dr. David Michaels. "Employers are responsible for ensuring the safe conditions of all their employees, including those who are temporary."
OSHA requires that employers protect the health and safety of all workers under their supervision and control. Davis was cleaning glass from under the hoist of a palletizing machine when an employee restarted the palletizer. Bacardi Bottling had failed to train temporary employees on utilizing locks and tags to prevent the accidental start-up of machines and to ensure its own employees utilized procedures to lock or tag out machines.
Two willful citations have been issued for failing to develop, document and utilize lockout/tagout procedures for the control of potentially hazardous energy and train temporary workers on lockout/tagout procedures. A willful violation is one committed with intentional knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirements or with plain indifference to worker safety and health.
"We are seeing untrained workers – many of them temporary workers – killed very soon after starting a new job. This must stop," said Michaels. "Employers must train all employees, including temporary workers, on the hazards specific to that workplace – before they start working. Had Bacardi done so, this tragic loss of life could have been prevented."
Also cited are nine serious violations for exposing workers to trips, struck-by and fire hazards where fixed permanent conveyors crossed through the aisle; obstructing exit routes; exposing workers to falling bottles and debris from overhead conveyors and electrical shock hazards. The employer also failed to provide an adequate number of lockout/tagout devices to perform lockout/tagout procedures of energy sources on various equipment, conduct an adequate periodic review of the energy control procedures, perform servicing and maintenance on machines and equipment without training in the methods and means for energy isolation, and require workers to wear safety goggles and long sleeves when using air guns at 90 pounds per square inch. A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.
One other-than-serious violation has been cited for storing a mixing tank within 12 inches of the electrical panel box. An other-than-serious violation is one that has a direct relationship to job safety and health, but probably would not cause death or serious physical harm.
Proposed penalties for the willful and serious violations total $192,000. The citations can be viewed at http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/BacardiBottlingCorp_584358_0208_13.pdf*.
Bacardi Bottling 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.
To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint, or report workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency's Jacksonville Area Office at 904-232-2895.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to ensure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.
U.S. Department of Labor news materials are accessible at http://www.dol.gov. The information above is available in large print, Braille or CD from the COAST office upon request by calling 216-893-7828 or TTY 216-893-7755.
* Accessibility Assistance: Contact OSHA's Office of Communications at 202-693-1999 for assistance accessing PDF materials.