OSHA Reaches Settlement with Meat Supplier Following Safety Violations in N.J.

December 27, 2019

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has reached a settlement with Thomas Foods International after issuing citations for workplace safety and health violations at the company’s meat processing facility in Swedesboro, N.J.

As part of the settlement, Thomas Foods International will pay $213,000 in penalties for violations involving noise and bloodborne pathogens hazards, and ineffective machine guarding following a May 2019 investigation initiated as part of OSHA’s Site-Specific Targeting program.

“This settlement confirms that Thomas Foods will correct the violations identified during the investigation to prevent employee exposure to serious injuries and disabilities,” said OSHA Marlton Area Director Paula Dixon-Roderick in a U.S. Department of Labor press release.

Under the terms of the settlement, Thomas Foods International will hold monthly meetings with an in-house safety and health committee for a minimum of one year, develop a safety checklist to ensure proper use of equipment and develop and implement a written safety and health program. The employer will also ensure management attend a 30-hour OSHA safety course and utilize consultation services to conduct at least one audit of the workplace.

“Employers are legally responsible for complying with workplace health and safety requirements and ensuring workers’ safety and health,” said Loren Sweatt, principal deputy assistant secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health, in the release.

OSHA has resources on protecting workers from hearing loss, amputations and bloodborne pathogens hazards. Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA’s role is to ensure these conditions for America’s working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance.

Source: U.S. Department of Labor

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