Packaging Corporation of America Under Scrutiny

Packaging Corporation of America Under Scrutiny

The national paper and cardboard manufacturer faces $185,000 in safety violation fines from OSHA

After an incident at Packaging Corporation of America’s Tomahawk, WI plant that left a man seriously burned in March, the company faces up to $185,560 in fines, according to OSHA. The man who was injured faced severe burns while trying to relight a steam boiler. The total amount of fines is based on 30 different violations that OSHA discovered after investigating the site.

Since 2008, the company—which operates in 30 different states and at one location in Hong Kong—has faced 46 violations. In 2008, one worker was injured and three killed in an explosion. In 2012, two workers were killed from a steam and ash release caused by fly ash. According to the Journal Sentinel, however, the two workers killed in 2012 were from an industrial cleaning company and were not regular employees at PCA.

The company’s violations range from repeat ones, to serious ones, to simple examples of poor housekeeping. Repeat violations include a less than suitable eyewash station, lack of machine guarding, improperly labeling hazardous materials, electrical safety hazards and more. Serious violations, which took up 17 of the 30 total violations and occur when the violation is likely to cause serious physical harm, include inadequate precautions to prevent ignition of flammable materials, usage of appropriate personal protective equipment to prevent burns, lack of machine guarding and more. The less serious violations include not marking confined spaces properly, not labeling web sling capacity, not posting load capacities in storage areas and more.

PCA has 15 days from the date of citation to contest the violations. For more information, visit: https://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=NEWS_RELEASES&p_id=24729

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