Cookie Maker Faces Safety Fines

Friday, September 25, 2015 @ 03:09 PM gHale

Cookie and cracker maker, Hearthside Food Solutions LLC in McComb, Ohio, is facing $52,500 in fines for one repeated and two serious safety violations, said officials at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

The McComb facility produces cookies and crackers for brands such as Kellogg, General Mills and Nabisco.

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The citations follow an OSHA investigation opened after a 55-year-old worker lost part of his right middle finger while unjamming a dough-cutting machine. Inspectors found the machine lacked adequate guarding to protect him from dangerous moving parts.

Hearthside Food Solutions faced citations for a similar violation at the same facility in 2010, resulting in the issuance of one repeated violation. OSHA also issued two serious violations for failing to turn off the machine during maintenance and not training employees on safety procedures to prevent exposure to operating parts.

“This worker suffered the permanent loss of part of his finger because his employer of three years failed to follow basic safety procedures,” said Kim Nelson, OSHA’s area director in Toledo. “It is disheartening to cite an employer repeatedly for hazards they know are exposing workers to life-altering injuries like this.”

Based in Downers Grove, Illinois, Hearthside Food Solutions LLC is the food industry’s largest contract manufacturer of baked goods and bars. With 23 facilities in North America and Europe the company employs 6,000 workers, nearly 1,800 of them at the McComb plant.

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