Pilgrim’s Pride cited with 8 safety violations
by Joshua Sharpe
jsharpe@cherokeetribune.com
April 24, 2013 12:00 AM | 3964 views | 0 0 comments | 11 11 recommendations | email to a friend | print
CANTON — The Pilgrim’s Pride chicken processing facility in Canton has been cited with eight safety violations and may face $58,000 in fines following the death of a worker killed there in October 2012.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration conducted an investigation into the facility on Univeter Road after an accident there killed Pilgrim’s Pride employee Christopher Chin on Oct. 22, 2012.

Chin, a 37-year-old Canton resident, died after being caught in a machine at the plant.

He was “attempting to remove a piece of cardboard,” from the machine, the Department of Labor said in a news release last week.

The machine, a hopper, did not have a guard to keep employees out —but it should have — according to OSHA’s report provided Tuesday by Department of Labor Spokesperson Lindsey Williams. The plant’s failure to outfit the machine with a barrier to keep employees out is one of the eight total safety violations found during OSHA’s investigation, which may have contributed to the Canton man’s death, Williams said Tuesday.

The violation is also among four “serious” violations cited by OSHA. Two others are repeat violations, the report said.

Pilgrim’s Pride has responded to the Department of Labor’s citations and requested a meeting to discuss them, Williams said.

Cameron Bruett, spokesperson for Pilgrim’s Pride Corp. said Tuesday that his company is still looking over the citations.

“We’re in the process of reviewing the OSHA claims,” he said. But they’re working with OSHA “to remedy any outstanding issues” in the Canton plant, he said.

Bruett could not speak to what sort of compensation has been provided to Chin’s family.
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