Aug. 15, 2007
Contact: Diana Petterson or Elizabeth Todd
Phone: (214) 767-4776, Ext. 222 or 221
Federal agency proposes $189,000 in penalties
KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited the Ray-Carroll County Grain Growers' grain storage and farm supply cooperative in Carrollton, Mo., for four alleged willful violations of federal health and safety law following a double fatality at the facility in February. The agency is proposing penalties totaling $189,000.
"Grain handling facilities have the potential to be extremely hazardous," said Charles E. Adkins, OSHA's regional administrator in Kansas City. "The two employees in this case were working on a grain pile to break up clots to assist grain flow through a ground-level grate when they were engulfed by the grain. Employers must remain committed to keeping the workplace safe and healthful to prevent these types of accidents."
The alleged willful violations are for failing to train employees to manage hazards associated with special tasks they are assigned; failing to provide a lifeline or alternative means for employees walking or standing on or in stored grain; failing to isolate all equipment presenting a danger to employees walking or standing on or in stored grain posing an engulfment hazard; and allowing an employee to be present in moving grain.
Willful violations are those committed with an intentional disregard of, or plain indifference to, the requirements of the Occupational Safety and Health Act and regulations.
Ray-Carroll County Grain Growers has 15 working days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply, request and participate in an informal conference with OSHA's area director, or contest the citations and penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
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 assure the safety and health of America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual process improvement in workplace safety and health. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.
U.S. Department of Labor releases are accessible on the Internet at www.dol.gov. The information in this news release will be made available in alternate format (large print, Braille, audio tape or disc) from the COAST office upon request. Please specify which news release when placing your request at (202) 693-7828 or TTY (202) 693-7755. The Labor Department is committed to providing America's employers and employees with easy access to understandable information on how to comply with its laws and regulations. For more information, please visit www.dol.gov/compliance.