A 16-year-old supermarket worker lost his arm when the meat grinder he was told to clean started unexpectedly, resulting in the life-changing incident for the boy and a $65,289 fine for the store.
Clarksburg Supermarket and its owners are facing fines from the federal Department of Labor and Tennessee OSHA for the incident and related violations.
Terry Altom and Kenneth Lovell, the owners of the store, violated the child labor requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) when they allegedly allowed two 16-year-old workers to clean the meat grinder, according to a Department of Labor (DOL) news release.
The child labor requirements of the FLSA ban employers from employing those under the age of 18 from operating or cleaning power-driven meat processing machines.
This includes a prohibition on cleaning the equipment and parts, even when disassembled.
The DOL Wage and Hour Division investigation also revealed the supermarket failed to pay overtime to one worker resulting in payment of $5,107 in back wages.
This investigation followed citations issued by the state’s OSHA for 13 serious safety violations and 11 other-than serious violations, resulting in a $13,250 fine.
The serious violations were focused on lockout/tagout, machine guarding and electrical equipment.