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Region 2 News Release: 08-1360-PHI (osha 08-176)
October 1, 2008
Contact: Leni Uddyback-Fortson
Phone: 215- 861-5102
PENNSAUKEN, N.J. -- The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Pepsi-Cola and National Brand Beverage Ltd. of Pennsauken with $195,000 in proposed penalties for alleged workplace safety and health violations.
OSHA initiated its investigation on April 1 in response to a complaint alleging that employees were exposed to hazards when clearing jams on the machine used to stack and transport pallets. As a result of the investigation, OSHA issued three willful citations.
The willful violations include the company's failure to provide training on lockout/tagout procedures, which prevent the inadvertent start-up of machinery or the release of hazardous energy, failure to apply lockout/tagout procedures when machines were being serviced and failure to properly guard machinery. OSHA issues a willful violation when an employer exhibits plain indifference to or intentional disregard for the law.
"The machine hazards identified at this facility pose a serious safety threat to employees if left unabated," said Gary Roskoski, director of OSHA's Marlton, N.J., area office. "A proven way of ensuring future abatement of all serious hazards, compliance with OSHA regulations and the prevention of employee injury, illness and death is for Pepsi-Cola and National Brand Beverage Ltd. in Pennsauken to establish an effective safety and health management system."
The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations to contest them before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. The inspection was conducted by OSHA's Marlton Area Office; telephone 856-396-2594.
OSHA operates a vigorous enforcement program, conducting more than 39,000 inspections in fiscal year 2007 and exceeding its inspection goals in each of the last eight years. In fiscal year 2007, OSHA found nearly 89,000 violations of its standards and regulations.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthy workplace for their employees. OSHA's role is to promote 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, audiotape 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.
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