$14,502 fine issued by (OSHA) over the death of a cannabis worker.
Trulieve and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OHSA) have entered into a settlement over a Massachusetts cannabis worker’s death. OSHA, through their report, determined that the cannabis worker had died after inhaling “ground cannabis dust.”
The initial fine levied against Trulieve was for $35,219 dollars, but OHSA later reduced that amount to $14,502 after withdrawing two of the citations.
As indicated in the inspection detail:
The citations were:
1910.1200(e)(1) Employers shall develop, implement, and maintain at each workplace, a written hazard communication program which at least describes how the criteria specified in paragraphs (f), (g), and (h) of this section for labels and other forms of warning, safety data sheets, and employee information and training will be met, and which also includes the following: Potential $6,215 penalty cost
1910.1200(g)(1) Chemical manufacturers and importers shall obtain or develop a safety data sheet for each hazardous chemical they produce or import. Employers shall have a safety data sheet in the workplace for each hazardous chemical which they use. Potential $14,502 penalty cost
1910.1200(h)(1) Employers shall provide employees with effective information and training on hazardous chemicals in their work area at the time of their initial assignment, and whenever a new chemical hazard the employees have not previously been trained about is introduced into their work area. Information and training may be designed to cover categories of hazards (e.g., flammability, carcinogenicity) or specific chemicals. Chemical-specific information must always be available through labels and safety data sheets. Potential $14,502 penalty cost
$14,502 + $14,502 + $6,215 = $35,219
The two removed citations 1910.1200(e)(1) & 1910.1200(g)(1) reduced the fine to the agreed-upon $14,502. The two regulations had to deal with having safety data sheets (SDS) and providing training for written hazard communication programs.
The event has caused Trulieve to “evaluate a series of actions ” indicated in their press release.
- Engaging a health professional to develop a program that gives workers guidance on how to manage potential health impacts resulting from potential reactions to ground cannabis dust.
- Making employees more aware of job transfer options, if available.
- Making permanent the temporary information and training program.
- Investigating options to better limit access and exposure to the areas where commercial grinding of cannabis occurs.
- Establishing policies that increase the presence of workers available who are trained in first aid.”