When asked to name the most dangerous occupations, few people would think to include a bakery worker on that last. However, a recent workplace accident at a bakery demonstrates the dangers and necessary safeguards necessary of working with any type of machinery in Illinois. The family member of one bakery worker will likely qualify for workers’ compensation after an accident took the life of their loved one.
The accident occurred in Aug. 2013. According to reports, a 61-year-old employee of Piantedosi Baking Co. Inc. was killed after her apron became tangled in a conveyor belt. She was strangled as a result. The state division of the Occupational Health and Safety Administration has issued over $20,000 in fines against the company as a result of the fatality.
The fines cover of variety of violations including a lack of safety guards and other safeguards that would quickly shut down machinery in case of such an incident. The same company was also fined by OSHA after an incident almost two years ago resulted in the amputation of one worker’s finger. Representatives state that OSHA has strict guidelines in place regarding the safe use of machinery in order to prevent such incidents.
While the fines levied as a result of OSHA’s investigation will hopefully prevent similar actions in the future, the family of the deceased woman will likely need help in the present. Most states such as Illinois require employers to provide their employees with workers’ compensation coverage. This state regulated insurance coverage typically extends to family members in the event of a fatal workplace accident and can assist with financial burdens such as funeral expenses and loss of income, among others. Some people who feel they are entitled to such benefits have found it helpful to seek assistance to ensure that they receive all of the benefits to which they are entitled under the law. While no amount of money can make up for the loss of a loved one, it can help get through some of the financial hardships created by the loss.
Source: EHS Today, Employee Strangles on Equipment in Bakery, OSHA Cites Employer, Sandy Smith, Oct. 31, 2013