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OSHA investigation results in companies facing significant fines

Federal safety regulations were established to prevent serious work-related injuries. When companies are lax in ensuring that these regulations are implemented, employees often pay a price. When a Missouri employee suffers a serious injury or illness on the job, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration may be called in to conduct a thorough investigation into the the incident.

Recently, OSHA announced its findings concerning the investigation into an accident that resulted in a temp worker suffering a significant hand injury. In Oct. 2018, the worker was assigned to JSL Foods. The man was given the task of cleaning a dough rolling machine. According to the report, as he was attempting to clean the rollers, his hand became entangled in the machinery and two of his fingers were amputated. 

OSHA investigators determined that the company violated several safety procedures for neglecting to train the worker in proper lockout procedures. In addition, the machinery involved did not have required guards to prevent such an accident. JSL Foods was subsequently fined in excess of $276,400 for several serious violations, two of which were described as willful, repeat violations regarding accidents and safety. The temp agency was also fined for failing to train workers in proper procedures when working around machinery, neglecting to establish an effective injury prevention program and for failing to inspect the machinery to which the employee was assigned.

The OSHA investigation report noted that the food manufacturer was fined in 2015 for similar violations. Though the victim's current condition was not provided, it is likely that his ability to perform many tasks will be permanently impacted, hampering his ability to work. Anytime a serious job-related accident causes a Missouri worker to suffer injuries, a claim for workers' compensation benefits may be appropriate. A skilled attorney can provide assistance in filing these claims and pursuing recovery of maximum benefits.

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