Dock floor extended in ice, bird feathers and feces led to forklift come slip right into propane tank, citations note


Erin Jordan

Nov. 1, 2021 10:17 am, Updated: Nov. 1, 2021 4:18 pm


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Iowa OSHA cited Postville’s Agri Star Meat & Poultry, displayed here in 2010, for violations after ~ an explode Feb. 15. (The Gazette)

Iowa regulators have fined Agri Star Meat & Poultry tree in Postville $28,415 for safety violations uncovered after a February to explode injured two employees.

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The state quote Agri Star for four serious violations causing the Feb. 15 explosion in the dock area that the kosher meat processing plant.

The biggest fine, $11,366, to be for not preserving safe surfaces for walking and operating vehicles, follow to citations The Gazette derived from Iowa OSHA.

Inspectors discovered the dock floor was extended with ice, dirt, bird feathers, water and also manure, which led to an employee operating a powered- commercial truck — choose a forklift — on Feb. 15 to earlier into a propane cylinder, puncturing it and releasing gas, which led to the explosion.

The blast struggle two guys working nearby, leading to burns ~ above one worker"s face and injuring the other. The tree temporarily lost power and also the to explode damaged the dock roof and walls. Unrelated come the explosion, the floor debris led to an Agri Star employee to slip and fall, injuring his back, Feb. 9.

Iowa OSHA also cited Agri Star for not analyzing powered-industrial truck operators’ performance at least every 3 years and failing come certify training and evaluation of these operators. The critical violation claims Agri Star failed to train operators to slow-moving down top top slippery or wet floors.

“Employee was operating a powered-industrial truck; discharge live poultry in cages,” the quote notes. “The condition of the floor was recognized to it is in wet and also covered in feathers, bird feces and also sawdust, yet the employer did no take plot to balance out the conditions.”

Agri Star has actually paid the penalties in this case, Iowa OSHA reported.

Agri Star opened up in 2009 at the site of the previous Agriprocessors Inc. Canadian service owner Hershey Friedman to buy the plant and also invested $7.5 million come modernize and upgrade prior to reopening, The Gazette report in 2010, 2 years ~ a substantial immigration raid in ~ Agriprocessors.

Friedman told Forward.com in 2016 the facility was processing about 50,000 birds a day, mostly chickens. He stated the plant have the right to slaughter 400 livestock in a day, yet often processed fewer due to the fact that it was trying to find quality beef from in ~ a 100-mile radius the the plant.

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Friedman claimed Agri Star also was making use of the government’s E-Verify program to make sure employees have actually legal immigration status, Forward.com reported.