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MFA Inc. is facing $91,000 in fines for 13 serious safety violations after a worker died Aug. 26 at the Aurora, MO-based milling plant, said officials at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

The worker landed on a first floor concrete area after falling 40 feet from a man lift used to transport materials in the facility. MFA is a milling plant that grinds products for use in farm and pet foods.

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“This was a terrible, preventable tragedy that underscores the importance of OSHA’s standards. Employers are required to use equipment in accordance with manufacturer’s specifications,” said Barbara Theriot, OSHA’s area director in Kansas City, MO. “Employers are responsible for identifying hazards, providing safety precautions such as guard rails and ensuring workers follow proper procedures to prevent injury or death.”

MFA faces citations for 13 serious violations, including: Failing to guard open-sided floors throughout the plant with varying fall distances up to 20 feet, inadequate footing space on industrial ladders creating fall distances up to 125 feet, failing to inspect man lifts every 30 days, failing to have guarded belts and pulleys on machinery, and failing to use proper connectors, thus exposing workers to electrical conductors on motors.

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Other violations included failing to have two exit doors, obstructed exits and unmarked and poorly lighted exit routes. The company also received a citation for failing to have an alarm system to warn workers of fires and other emergencies.

A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.

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