SEPTEMBER 28, 2016
TWIN FALLS, IDAHO— An Amalgamated Sugar Company employee, burned by hot sugar syrup on Monday, has been released from the hospital, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration says it’s awaiting investigation findings from the sugar company to ensure a similar accident doesn’t happen again.
“We can confirm an employee was treated for burns resulting from hot sugar syrup that spilled from a sample container she was carrying,” Amalgamated Sugar spokeswoman Jessica McAnally said Wednesday.
Emergency personnel responded about 2:45 p.m. to the company’s Twin Falls factory, at 2320 Orchard Drive E., for the report of a 28-year-old woman with “severe burns,” Twin Falls County Sheriff’s Office Spokeswoman Lori Stewart said. Later it was determined she might have suffered a “medical incident” before she was burned. Based on eye witnesses, she had a seizure and fell over with an open container of this syrup she was about to treat. When she fell over, the syrup spilled and thus burning her.
Air St. Luke’s took the woman to University of Utah Hospital in Salt Lake City, Stewart said. The company spokeswoman didn’t know which hospital the woman had gone to except that it was a burn-treatment unit in Salt Lake City.
“We also understand she has been released and is now at home,” McAnally said. “And we’re thankful for the care and treatment she received.”
McAnally said Amalgamated Sugar is investigating the incident, and an OSHA spokesman said the agency is awaiting those results.
“We have given the facility five business days to provide their investigation findings to us for review,” Department of Labor Public Affairs Official Leo Kay said. “If we have questions about their findings or the information they provide, we will contact them to discuss it.”
OSHA officials couldn’t discuss the details of the incident because it’s an open investigation, but Kay provided a list of several factors they’ll look for in Amalgamated Sugar’s investigation.
“We want to know that employees are not continuing to be exposed to a hazard; that the hazard itself no longer exists; that the employer has identified the cause (or) problem, and that good, solid corrective actions were taken to ensure the hazard or something similar doesn’t happen again.”
She had a seizure and fell over with an open container of this syrup she was about to treat. When she fell over, the syrup spilled and thus burning her.
The Amalgamated Sugar Company LLC is owned by Snake River Sugar Company, a grower owned Cooperative. It is headquartered in Boise, Idaho with processing plants in Paul, Twin Falls, and Nampa, Idaho. In addition, Amalgamated owns or leases warehouses and bulk transfer stations at strategic locations from the Midwest to the West Coast.