$339,379 in penalties proposed by OSHA for Safeway after Denver milk plant worker loses 4 fingers

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DENVER (KDVR) — The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has proposed $339,379 in penalties for Safeway, Inc. after a worker at a Denver milk packaging plant lost four fingers while operating a molding machine that lacked required safeguards.

During the investigation, OSHA discovered that on Feb. 12, Safeway had two willful and five serious violations. One other than serious violation was also found for:

  • Failing to implement procedures for the control of hazardous energy, including failing to develop and implement lockout/tagout procedures to prevent machines from operating unintentionally.
  • Inadequate machine guarding.
  • Inadequate numbers of locks to perform lockout/tagout and inadequate lockout/tagout training.
  • Oil leaks on the floor exposing workers to slip and trip hazards.

“Safeway Inc. knew its equipment lacked safeguards, yet the company chose to let work continue without regard to workers’ safety,” said OSHA Area Director Amanda Kupper in Denver. “This indifference caused a worker to suffer a serious and permanent injury.”

Safeway has 15 business days from receipt of the citation and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director, or contest the findings before the independent OSHA review commission.

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