Saying the employer knew workers had to be trained on lockout/tagout, OSHA has issued $702,300 in fines against a food manufacturer in connection with the death of an employee who was crushed to death in a machine used to make hummus.
On Dec. 16, 2011, Daniel Collazo Torres, 28, was cleaning the machine when he became caught in it and was crushed to death between two rotating augers.
OSHA has issued 18 citations against Tribe Mediterranean Foods, a subsidiary of Nestle SA. The citations include:
- seven egregious willful citations for lack of training on lockout/tagout, one for each untrained worker exposed to the hazard
- two additional willful violations for failing to adequately train maintenance workers to recognize hazardous energy sources and failing to develop and use lockout/tagout procedures
- three repeat violations for failing to conduct periodic inspections of the energy control procedures, and
- six serious violations for electrical, fall, pallet jack and machine guarding violations.
The maximum amount for a willful OSHA violation is $70,000.
Due to the willful and repeat violations, OSHA has placed Tribe Mediterranean Foods in the Severe Violator Enforcement Program which mandates follow-up inspections to ensure compliance.
Tribe has 15 business days to appeal the fines. The company says it’s still reviewing the citations.