The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently cited Eau Claire, Wisconsin-based Choice Products USA LLC for continually exposing employees to machine safety hazards its cookie dough manufacturing facility. The company faces $782,526 in penalties, and has been placed in the agency’s Severe Violator Enforcement Program.
OSHA cited Choice Products for five egregious willful violations for failing to implement and train employees on lockout/tagout procedures to prevent unintentional contact with machine operating parts during service and maintenance. Inspectors also determined that the company failed to install machine guarding, and comply with forklift regulations.
OSHA cited Choice Products for exposing employees to similar machine hazards following an October 2016 inspection.
“The company managers developed comprehensive lockout/tagout procedures following the 2016 inspection but failed to implement their own safety program,” said OSHA Acting Regional Administrator William Donovan.
OSHA offers compliance assistance resources on Safeguarding Equipment and Protecting Employees from Amputations and Control of Hazardous Energy – Lockout/Tagout.
The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director, or contest the findings before an independent commission.