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New Jersey's Bravo Pak Fails to Follow Lockout/Tagout, OSHA Says

June 19, 2020
Company lacked a lockout/tagout program, leading to severe injuries for one employee.

New Jersey-based Bravo Pak Inc. has failed to pay $259,760 in penalties following an OSHA investigation.

The bubble packaging supply manufacturer failed to respond to the agency's list of citations and penalties centered around the company's alleged lack of safety standards.

Loren Sweatt, principal deputy assistant secretary of labor, responded in a statement, "Employers are legally responsible for ensuring that workers are provided necessary workplace safety and health protections."

OSHA's Notification of Failure to Abate Alleged Violations lists an original inspection date of March 21, 2019.

Less than three months later, in June 2019, a worker suffered finger amputations while trying to fix a jammed piece of machinery. Investigators discovered Bravo Pak lacked a lockout/tagout program to address the unexpected start-up of a machine during servicing and failed to ensure proper machine guarding. At the time, the company agreed to correct the hazards, to which the company did not provide proof of corrective actions.

In a follow-up inspection on September 30, 2019, investigators cited Bravo Pak for the following hazards:

Citation 1. 29 CFR 1910.147(c)(1): The employer did not establish a program consisting of an energy control procedure, employee training and periodic inspections. Employees performed servicing or maintenance on machines including but not limited to: Bubble extrusion machine Model #1800, S/N BV201805,  Kraft Paper Bubble Film Laminating Bag making Machine Model DNG-650/980. Occurred on or about 9/30/19. Penalty Amount: $94,458

Citation 2. 29 CFR 1910.212(a)(1): Bag machine #1,2,3,4,6,7: The Kraft paper bubble film laminating bag making  machines have multiple pinch points and rotating parts exposed. The machines use two layers of paper and two layers of bubble film attached together with hot melted glue. The machine has heat sealing knives and pull rollers that press against the product to seal it. The heat sealing knives (presses) and pull rollers were unguarded, observed. Penalty Amount: $70,844

Citation 3. 29 CFR 1910.212(a)(3): Bag machine #1,2,3,4,6,7 The Kraft Paper/PE Bubble film laminating bag making machine have cutting knives unguarded, observed on or about 9/30/19. Penalty Amount: $94,458

"This employer's failure to follow required safety standards continues to put workers at risk for serious injuries,” said OSHA Marlton Area Office Director Paula Dixon-Roderick in a statement.

Following the issuance of the September citations and penalties, the company had 15 days to comply, request an informal conference or contest the findings. Bravo Pak did not contest or respond to the violations, which became a final order by law. According to OSHA, the agency now may refer the company for debt collection.

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