Several violations have led to OSHA fining an Ohio ethanol production facility $149,000. The facility, Three Rivers Energy LLC, was hit with 46 safety and health violations, including 42 serious infractions, as a result of three separate OSHA inspections.
How Did OSHA End Up Fining an Ohio Ethanol Production Facility $149,000?
Three Rivers Energy LLC, a bio-refinery that processes in the neighborhood of 16 million bushels of corn and 46 million gallons of ethanol annually, had yet to respond to the OSHA penalties at the time of this report. However, the fact that the company was cited for over 40 serious violations seems to clearly be the reason that their proposed fine has reached six figures. The citations that the ethanol production facility is facing include but are not limited to the following:
- Failing to correct deficiencies with equipment
- Not properly establishing a team to investigate incidents involving unsafe workplace conditions
- Failing to install an emergency response plan
- Not maintaining accurate records of workplace accidents and injuries
- Failing to train workers properly in emergency response procedures
- Lack of written procedures for properly maintaining production equipment
- Failing to have safeguards on live electrical equipment and other machinery
- Not providing emergency response and rescue equipment
- Lack of procedures for testing atmospheric conditions
- Failing to create a written plan for the safe removal of spills, dust and grain from work areas
- Not having adequate diagrams and drawings of pipes and other equipment used during the chemical process
While Three Rivers Energy has yet to respond to the penalties it is facing, in many cases, where there is smoke, there is fire, and over three dozen serious OSHA violations is a whole lot of smoke. This news makes us fear greatly for the safety of the employees at Three Rivers Energy, who should not have to be exposed to the unsafe work conditions that they reportedly are facing on a daily basis. It is not right, and hopefully, these fines are the first step to ensuring that employee safety is the top priority for Three Rivers Energy going forward.
At Larrimer & Larrimer, LLC, our workers’ compensation attorneys work on behalf of workers injured on the job and the families of the victims of fatal workplace accidents in Ohio.