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Region 4 News Release: 12-773-ATL (170)
May 7, 2012
Contact: Michael Wald    Michael D'Aquino
Phone: 404-562-2078    404-562-2076
Email: wald.michael@dol.gov    d'aquino.michael@dol.gov

US Department of Labor's OSHA cites Ware Milling in Georgia for
30 safety and health violations after worker trapped in cotton bin

WAYCROSS, Ga. – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Ware Milling Co. Inc. for 30 safety and health violations at the company's Waycross facility. Proposed penalties total $157,500.

OSHA initiated an inspection in November 2011 after receiving a complaint that a worker had entered a milled cotton seed bin without preparation and appropriate equipment, and became trapped and hung from a lanyard for a lengthy time. The worker experienced leg numbness exerted by the pressure of the safety harness and fell more than 10 feet onto the top of the cotton seed mill pile after rope was cut.

Two willful safety violations include failing to perform lockout/tagout procedures for the energy source of the screw auger when workers are inside the bins and have a stationed observer who can provide emergency assistance. A willful violation is one committed with intentional knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirements, or with plain indifference to worker safety and health. The citations carry penalties of $77,000.

Twenty-four serious safety and health violations include failing to select appropriate personal protective equipment and train workers on how it should fit; develop an emergency action plan; provide rescue equipment when workers enter the bins; provide respirators to workers and use engineering controls during exposure to unregulated particulates; properly guard stairways, open-sided platforms, pulleys and belts; prevent combustible dust a