Feb. 11, 2015
Pork-processing facility cited for exposing workers to corrosive chemical
OSHA proposes $51K penalty for violations by Seaboard Foods LLC in Guymon, Okla.
Employer name: Seaboard Foods LLC
Inspection site: Guymon, Oklahoma
Date Inspection Initiated and What Prompted the Inspection: The targeted inspection, which began October 2014, is part of OSHA's National Emphasis Program on chemicals, and focuses on OSHA's Process Safety Management standards containing specific requirements for preventing or minimizing the consequences of catastrophic releases of highly hazardous chemicals.
Investigation Findings: Seaboard Foods, a pork-processing facility, operates two anhydrous ammonia refrigeration systems. OSHA issued seven serious citations related to the process safety management of the ammonia refrigeration systems used in its production process. Some of the violations cited include failing to:
- provide written operating procedures addressing safety systems and function;
- develop and implement safe work practices to control hazards during operations;
- train workers involved with operating procedures involving the anhydrous ammonia process; and
- inspect and test process equipment to maintain its mechanical integrity.
Three violations are being cited for fall, electrical and machine guarding hazards. 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.
Proposed Penalties: $51,000
View the citation: http://www.osha.gov/ooc/citations/SeaboardFoodsLLC_999145_0205_15.pdf
Quote: "The safety of a worker's skin, eyes and lungs should never be taken lightly," said David Bates, OSHA's area director in Oklahoma City. "Anhydrous ammonia is corrosive and if it's not properly controlled it puts workers at risk. Employers who deal with highly hazardous chemicals like these have a responsibility to implement effective process safety management programs, because the release of toxic, reactive or flammable liquids and gases can be catastrophic."
Information: The employer has 15 business days from receipt of its citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director, or contest the citations and penalties 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 Oklahoma City Area Office at 405-278-9560.
Release Number: 15-105-DAL
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