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News Alert: OSHA Fines Company Due to Worker Crushed to Death in Hummus Machine

Posted on Jun 22, 2012

On Monday, June 18, 2012, OSHA announced that it is citing Tribe Mediterranean Foods for 18 alleged violations of federal workplace safety standards. 

This comes after the investigation of the death of Daniel Collazo Torres, who was crushed to death while cleaning a machine used to make hummus on December 16, 2011 in a factory just outside Boston.  Collazo Torres' hand was caught in the machine, and his body was pulled into the machine.

Collazo Torres was a 28-year old temporary worker.  He did not have the necessary training on lockout, or tagout procedures.  The company should have provided training to Collazo Torees, so he had the knowledge to shut down the machines and lock out power sources before any work such as cleaning was done.  OSHA said that the company knew that Collazo Torres needed training, but did not provide it. 

Workers are often seriously injured by moving parts of machines such as nip points and shear points. In this case, an unnecessary death occurred because the worker was not given proper training.

In order to ensure workers' safety, employers must train their employees.  In addition, employers need to make sure that the machines are safe and not defective in terms of their design and/or warnings.

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