Deaths of Six Chicken-Plant Workers Spur $998,637 OSHA Fine (1)

July 23, 2021, 3:11 PM; Updated: July 23, 2021, 7:20 PM

The deaths of six workers from nitrogen asphyxiation at a Georgia chicken processing plant in January prompted OSHA to propose a $998,637 fine against four companies.

“Six people’s deaths, and injuries suffered by at least a dozen others, were entirely avoidable,” U.S. Labor Secretary Marty Walsh said in a briefing Friday.

The mishap at the Foundation Food Group Inc. plant occurred after production started at 7 a.m. on Jan. 28, said Kurt Petermeyer, southeastern regional administrator of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

After an immersion freezer that used liquid nitrogen as a refrigerant malfunctioned, employees tried to troubleshoot the ...

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