Company Pays OSHA Fine and Creates New Safety and Health Position

Jan. 21, 2000
Archer Daniels Midland Co., will pay $650,000 in penalties for safety and health violations at its rail car repair facility in Decatur, Ill.

Archer Daniels Midland Co. (ADM), agreed to pay $650,00 in penalties for safety and health violations at its rail car repair facility in Decatur, Ill., and to create a new position of vice president of safety and health.

"We are pleased that ADM has agreed to resolve this matter," said OSHA Administrator Charles N. Jeffress. "The company has already corrected the dangerous conditions involving serious hazards to employees who were working in confined spaces without proper equipment and assistance. Even more encouraging is the company's willingness to improve safety and health conditions at all its facilities nationwide."

ADM said in the settlement that the conditions in the original violations have been corrected and that the vice president of safety and health will be charged with corporate-wide authority and responsibility for monitoring the working conditions throughout the company.

OSHA inspected ADM's rail car facility following an employee complaint that the workers were assigned to clean inside rail tank cars without an attendant present.

OSHA also found that employees working inside the rail cars were wearing body harnesses without attached retrieval lines. Those lines would allow for emergency rescue of employees without exposing others to the confined space.

As a result of its investigation, OSHA cited the company on Dec. 2, 1998, for violations of the confined space and respiratory protection standards, as well as inadequate storage of flammable and combustible materials.

"By correcting the initial problem and creating a new position for oversight on safety and health, ADM has taken a significant first step to improve the safety and health of its workers," said Jeffress.

ADM's corporate headquarters and numerous facilities are in Decatur.

The company, which processes and merchandises agricultural commodities and products, employs approximately 14,000 workers nationwide.

Approximately 45 workers are employed at the railcar repair facility.

About the Author

EHS Today Staff

EHS Today's editorial staff includes:

Dave Blanchard, Editor-in-Chief: During his career Dave has led the editorial management of many of Endeavor Business Media's best-known brands, including IndustryWeekEHS Today, Material Handling & LogisticsLogistics Today, Supply Chain Technology News, and Business Finance. In addition, he serves as senior content director of the annual Safety Leadership Conference. With over 30 years of B2B media experience, Dave literally wrote the book on supply chain management, Supply Chain Management Best Practices (John Wiley & Sons, 2021), which has been translated into several languages and is currently in its third edition. He is a frequent speaker and moderator at major trade shows and conferences, and has won numerous awards for writing and editing. He is a voting member of the jury of the Logistics Hall of Fame, and is a graduate of Northern Illinois University.

Adrienne Selko, Senior Editor: In addition to her roles with EHS Today and the Safety Leadership Conference, Adrienne is also a senior editor at IndustryWeek and has written about many topics, with her current focus on workforce development strategies. She is also a senior editor at Material Handling & Logistics. Previously she was in corporate communications at a medical manufacturing company as well as a large regional bank. She is the author of Do I Have to Wear Garlic Around My Neck?, which made the Cleveland Plain Dealer's best sellers list.

Nicole Stempak, Managing Editor:  Nicole Stempak is managing editor of EHS Today and conference content manager of the Safety Leadership Conference.

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