OSHA fines Lake Forest box manufacturer $185K
Sun-Times Media wire September 5, 2013 11:22AM
Updated: October 7, 2013 1:11PM
A Lake Forest-based box-making firm has been fined more than $185,000 after a worker was injured in a fire at the company’s Wisconsin mill, where five workers have died in the last two years.
Packaging Corporation of America, which manufactures paper and cardboard boxes, faces 30 safety violations after a worker at a Tomahawk, Wis., paper mill was severely burned while attempting to relight a steam boiler in March, according to a statement from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
The company was cited for 17 serious violations, seven repeat safety violations, and six less-than-serious citations, the statement said. The proposed fines are $185,560.
In 2012, two contractors were killed by fly ash after a steam and ash release at the Tomahawk plant, the statement said. In 2008, three workers were killed and another injured during an explosion in the plant’s storage area.
The company has been cited 46 times in the past five years nationwide, the statement said.
“Past explosions arising from similar hazards by this employer have led to tragic incidents,” Robert Bonack, OSHA’s Appleton director, said in the statement.
“In this case, failing to prevent the ignition of flammable vapors and provide workers with appropriate personal protective equipment is another preventable misstep that has led to serious injuries,” Bonack said.