OSHA Delivers Fine to Pizza Maker for Exposing Employees to Oxygen Deficient Atmosphere

A willful health violation was issued for exposing workers to an oxygen deficient environment when processing pizzas in the liquid nitrogen cryogenic freezer.

OSHA has cited Emil's Pizza Inc. with nine alleged safety and health violations, including one willful violation for exposing workers to an oxygen deficient atmosphere at its frozen pizza manufacturing plant in Watertown, Wis. Proposed fines total $76,300.

"Employers are responsible for knowing the hazards that exist in their workplace and training workers in proper safety precautions such as air monitoring and respirator use," said Kim Stille, director of OSHA's Madison Area Office. "OSHA is committed to protecting workers, especially when employers fail to do so."

OSHA initiated an inspection of the plant in June following a complaint. A willful health violation was issued for exposing workers to an oxygen deficient environment when processing pizzas in the liquid nitrogen cryogenic freezer. The freezer creates the potential for an oxygen deficient atmosphere due to the buildup of nitrogen gas in the production area. No injuries or illness were reported as a result of the conditions.

The company also has been cited for eight serious violations including three health violations for failing to implement a respirator program, train workers on how to use air monitoring equipment, and train workers on the hazards of liquid nitrogen.

Five serious safety violations are for failing to use the guard on the packing machine, which exposed workers to burns; train employees in evacuation procedures; and review an emergency action plan, including developing a procedure to account for personnel after an evacuation, clear exit routes, and maintain floors in a dry condition.

Download Center

  • Lone Worker Safety Guide

    As organizations digitalize and remote operations become more commonplace, the number of lone workers is on the rise. These employees are at increased risk for unaddressed workplace accidents or emergencies. This guide was created to help employers better understand common lone worker risks and solutions for lone worker risk mitigation and incident prevention.

  • Online Safety Training Buyer's Guide

    Use this handy buyer's guide to learn the basics of selecting online safety training and how to use it at your workplace.

  • COVID Return-to-Work Checklist, Fall 2021

    Use this checklist as an aid to help your organization return to work during the COVID-19 pandemic in a safe and healthy manner.

  • SDS Buyer's Guide

    Learn to make informed decisions while searching for SDS Management Software.

  • Risk Matrix Guide

    Risk matrices come in many different shapes and sizes. Understanding the components of a risk matrix will allow you and your organization to manage risk effectively.

  • Industry Safe

Featured Whitepapers

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - October 2021

    October 2021

    Featuring:

    • TRAINING
      On Route To Safe Material Handling
    • SAFETY CULTURE
      Normalization of Deviations in Performance
    • IH:INDOOR AIR QUALITY
      Arresting Fugitive Dusts
    • PPE:FOOT PROTECTION
      Safety Shoes Make the Outfit for Well-Protected Workers
    View This Issue