OSHA has cited Southwest Feed Mills Inc. with 12 serious safety violations for exposing workers to combustible dust, falls, unguarded machines and other hazards at the company’s Dallas facility. A December 2011 inspection was initiated as part of OSHA’s Regional Emphasis Program on Grain Handling Facilities. The proposed penalties total $45,000.
The violations include failing to provide fall protection equipment, train workers on the use of powered industrial trucks, ensure that moving machinery parts are guarded, ensure receiving-pit feed openings are covered by grates to prevent workers from falling into the pit, ensure that the bucket elevator is not jogged to prevent igniting combustible materials, ensure that electrical equipment is approved for locations containing combustible dust, implement a housekeeping program to control combustible dust, and develop confined space procedures.
As we have previously reported, a serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known. OSHA’s regional emphasis programs are intended to address hazards or industries that pose a risk to workers in a particular jurisdiction. The grain handling industry is a high-hazard industry in which workers can be exposed to many serious and life-threatening hazards. Some of the hazards include fires and explosions from grain dust accumulation, suffocation from engulfment and entrapment in grain bins, falls from heights, and crushing injuries and amputations from equipment.
Source: Claims Journal
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