The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Imperial Sugar Company for various violations at its plant in Texas. A total of $36,000 in penalties was assessed. The alleged violations included the use of three filter-cartridge dust collectors that were not equipped with explosion protection systems and bags of sugar stored in an unstable manner. The proposed penalties ranged from $4,500 to $6,300.
Imperial Sugar, based in Sugar Land, Texas, is a major processor and refiner of sugar. The company said last month it plans to begin removing potentially combustible dust at its powdered sugar operation in Gramercy, Texas. The dust forced the plant to shut down that operation. As you will recall, a February 7th explosion at an Imperial refinery outside Savannah, Georgia, killed 13 people and it appears dust that ignited caused the blast. The disaster prompted OSHA to inspect hundreds of plants where combustible dust is a workplace hazard.
Source: Houston Chronicle and Associated Press
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