Friday, August 14, 2015

Major chicken supplier cited by OSHA for 55 health and safety violations

Case Farms—a leading fast-food and supermarket chicken supplier—faces a $816,500 fine for being cited Thursday for 55 health and safety violations by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration, Lydia Wheeler reports for The Hill. Case Farms operates seven facilities in Ohio and North Carolina, including one in Goldsboro, N.C., that was awarded the 2014 Plant of the Year by The National Provisioner in a poll voted on by readers. (National Provisioner photo: Case Farms facility in Goldsboro, N.C.)

"The citations are the result of a February inspection in which the agency found amputation hazards; non-functioning fall-arrest systems, unprotected platforms and wet work surfaces that could result in falls; lack of personal protective equipment and emergency eye wash stations; and improperly stored oxygen cylinders," Wheeler writes. Fueled by worker injuries and complaints OSHA has inspected the facilities 66 times since 1988.

OSHA assistant secretary of labor David Michaels said in a statement: “Case Farms is an outrageously dangerous place to work. In the past 25 years, Case Farms has been cited for more than 350 safety and health violations. Despite committing to OSHA that it would eliminate serious hazards, Case Farms continues to endanger the safety and health of its workers. This simply must stop.”

Case Farms, which processes 2.8 million chickens per week and has more than 3,200 employees, said in a statement: "Case Farms values its employees and is committed to ensuring a safe and healthy work environment for its associates." OSHA has given Case Farms 15 days to respond to the latest citations. (Read more)

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