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Amputation of Worker’s Fingers by Fan Result in $65,000 Fine

A worker was operating equipment that makes meat into patties before they enter the freezing conveyor. The patties are sprayed with liquid nitrogen, creating a mist that exits through exhaust pipes located on the building’s roof. The nitrogen and small pieces of ground beef can freeze in the exhaust pipes, which can cause a build-up of ice at the opening of the pipes. While trying to clear such an ice jam in the exhaust pipe, the worker put one hand into the pipe. The exhaust fan blades amputated several of his fingers, among other injuries. The employer pleaded guilty to failing to provide information, instruction and supervision to the worker and was fined $65,000 [Cargill Ltd., Gov’t. News Release, April 12, 2016].