U.S. Department of Labor | Dec. 22, 2015
Springfield, Missouri, warehouse fails to report hospitalization of 3 workers
injured when pallets of glass bottles collapse at packaging facility
OSHA proposes more than $101K in fines after finding multiple hazards
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. Three workers were hospitalized when more than 30 pallets of glass bottles filled with coffee drinks collapsed at a Springfield warehouse and repacking facility operated by Buske Logistics. One worker had to be rescued from under the rubble. Two of the injured were temporary workers assigned to the facility. Buske Logistics, which had supervisory responsibility for all three employees, failed to report the injuries to the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration as required*.
OSHA cited the company on Dec. 14 for one willful and 10 serious safety violations carrying proposed penalties totaling $101,500. Buske Logistics has also been placed in the agency's Severe Violator Enforcement Program.
"Employers must report the hospitalization of a worker to OSHA within 24 hours," said Barbara Theriot, OSHA's area director in Kansas City. "Our investigation found multiple hazards at this facility that need to be immediately addressed to prevent further injuries to workers. All workers deserve a safe working environment."
The injuries included:
- A 23-year-old Express Employment Professionals temporary worker suffered head and knee injuries as well as several abrasions and cuts from the glass bottles. He had been working at Buske Logistics for three months.
- A second employee, assigned from Focus Workforces of Springfield suffered a head injury, broken leg, abrasions and cuts. The 43-year-old had been working in the facility for more than three months.
- A 53-year-old employee of Buske Logistics sustained lacerations, contusions, and a severe knee injury.
The agency found numerous violations including:
- Material was not stored in a manner to prevent sliding and collapse.
- Exit routes were blocked.
- Employees were exposed to various hazards from powered industrial vehicles including battery acid, use of damaged vehicles and unsafe operation.
View current citations here*.
The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director in Kansas City, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint, or report amputations, eye loss, 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 Kansas City Area Office at 816-483-9531.
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.
# # #
Release Number: 15-2388-CHI
U.S. Department of Labor news materials are accessible at http://www.dol.gov. The department's Reasonable Accommodation Resource Center converts departmental information and documents into alternative formats, which include Braille and large print. For alternative format requests, please contact the department at (202) 693-7828 (voice) or (800) 877-8339 (federal relay).
* Accessibility Assistance: Contact OSHA's Office of Communications at 202-693-1999 for assistance accessing PDF materials.