ConAgra Foods has reached a settlement with the North Carolina Department of Labor regarding the explosion at a Slim Jim factory last year that killed four workers and injured about 70 others.
ConAgra will pay $106,440 for 26 safety violations at the plant in Garner, NC. The state had issued fines totaling almost $135,000.
As part of the settlement agreement, ConAgra said it will screen safety compliance records of contractors working at its plant and work with them in advance to address potential safety and health hazards.
Investigators say the explosion was caused by a contract worker who improperly purged a new fuel supply line for a gas-fired water heater. That allowed gas to vent into an enclosed room.
The state has also fined the contractor, Energy Systems Analysts, $58,100. Those fines are still pending.
When the roof of the plant collapsed after the explosion, some workers were stopped in their tracks from escaping, had to turn around and fled through a warehouse.