Meat Processor has Trouble in Dodge City

Dodge City, Kansas: The scene of many a gunfight between the law-abiding marshal and bad guys in movies about the Old West. Although they're not U.S. marshals and don't resemble John Wayne, investigators from the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) showed up in Dodge recently to enforce one law: the Occupational Safety and Health Act.

Federal investigators issued 28 citations for alleged violations of the Occupational Safety and Health Act to a Farmland National Beef meat processing plant in Dodge City with proposed penalties totaling $112,200.

OSHA issued 17 serious citations for hazards related to unprotected floor holes, inadequate machine guarding, lack of fall protection for employees on the roof or near dangerous equipment and other safety-related problems. Serious citations are ones in which there is a substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazardous condition and the employer knew or should have known of the hazard.

Farmland National Beef, the fourth-largest meat processing company in the United States, has 15 days to contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission or to request an informal conference with the area director.

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