On Tuesday, the California Working Environment and Health Working Group announced more than $ 250,160 in quotes and sanctions against Aardvark Clay & Supplies Inc. for its cautious failure to properly protect equipment after an employee was merged into a clay manufacturing industry.  The security guards had been removed from the industrial mixer – known as a "pug mill" – and the worker had not received training on the machine before the accident, according to Cal / OSHA.
"Pug factories have rotating blades that can cause amputations and deadly injured workers," said Cal / OSHA Chief Juliann Sum in a statement. "Employers must ensure that all machines and parts are properly guarded and employees are effectively trained to prevent tragic accidents like this."
Santa Ana, California, uses industrial pug factories to manufacture and mix clay. On September 20, 201
Cal / OSHA's study found that all four of the store's pug factories had unprotected openings and exposed workers for the moving parts, when the safety regulations required that the mixers should be protected to prevent worker hands from entering the machine during operation, according to statement.
Aardvark was also quoted as failing to effectively train workers on the dangers involved in operating the machine and did not identify or correct Cal / OSHA hazards.
Investigators found that even if the manufacturer had left security guards for the machine, the employer removed the guards. Manufactured guards had been added to the machines later but were eventually removed when the employer thought they were interfering with the production, according to the statement.
Cal / OSHA proposed penalties for five offenses and classified one as intentional serious accident related, a cautious-serious, two serious and a general. The cautious and serious offenses were cited for the employer's failure to protect machine openings and points. The serious violations identify risks from the unlocked part of the lock machine and the failure of the employer's security program to identify unsafe conditions, carry out corrective actions and effectively train employees on work-related hazards, according to the statement.
Officials with Aardvark Clay & Supplies could not immediately be reached for comment.