Chicken Processor Fined $317K After Amputation

OSHA recently issued citations at the Birdsboro Kosher Farms facility in Pennsylvania.

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OSHA recently issued citations at the Birdsboro Kosher Farms facility in Pennsylvania for two willful and eight serious safety and health violations.

OSHA initiated an inspection on April 2 after receiving a report that a worker suffered a thumb amputation while operating a mixing machine. At that time, the agency also initiated follow-ups to previous OSHA inspections conducted in 2013, 2014 and 2015 to ensure the workplace was free of the previously cited workplace hazards.

In its inspection, OSHA found a deficient system for protecting workers from the hazards associated with the unexpected start-up of machinery and issued the willful citations.

The serious violations included uncovered floor holes, a deficient hearing conservation program, inadequate egress signage, the company's failure to secure compressed gas cylinders, a failure to provide sanitary personal protective equipment or specialty foot protection at no cost to employees, and failure to post permit-required confined space signs.

"Birdsboro Kosher Farms is leaving its employees vulnerable to a variety of safety and health hazards that can cause serious injuries," said Timothy Braun, acting OSHA area director in Harrisburg." The proposed fines totaled $317,477.

The employer has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and proposed penalties to comply, request a conference with OSHA's area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.