Two CA Companies Cited in Amputation Case

Santa Ana—Cal/OSHA has issued more than $300,000 in serious citations to two employers after a temporary worker lost two fingers cleaning machinery at a food manufacturing facility in Los Angeles.

On October 2, 2018, the employee for Priority Workforce, Inc. was assigned to JSL Foods, Inc., a maker and distributer of noodles, pasta and baked goods. The worker was cleaning a dough rolling machine when his left hand was partially pulled into the moving rollers and two of his fingers were amputated.

Cal/OSHA’s investigation found the machine had not been adequately guarded to prevent fingers from entering pinch points, or de-energized and locked out to prevent movement while the worker was cleaning it. Neither employer had trained the worker to follow lockout/tagout procedures before cleaning the equipment.

Lockout involves isolating a machine from its power source and using a device to prevent machinery from being restarted, while a tagout device on a machine shows it is prohibited to operate.  

Cal/OSHA cited JSL Foods Inc. $276,435 in proposed penalties for seven violations, including one willful repeat serious violation and one willful repeat serious accident-related violation for failing to follow lockout/tagout procedures.

JSL Foods, Inc. was cited twice in 2015 for the same violations.

Cal/OSHA also cited Tustin-based Priority Workforce Inc. $29,250 in proposed penalties for three serious violations for the following:

  • Failure to establish, implement, and maintain an effective Injury and Illness Prevention Program;
  • Failure to ensure employees were effectively trained; and
  • Failure to ensure the machinery was adequately guarded.