Convenience Stores Resolve Chemical Training Violations for $1.5M
Like most convenience shops and fast food chains, the stores use carbon dioxide in their fountain beverage dispensers.
Both California and Federal worker safety laws require training for workers who handle or may be exposed to hazardous chemicals. Employees who handle carbon dioxide must have training to properly handle the chemical and detect leaks from tanks or supply lines.
Before reaching the settlement, the company revised its business practices to ensure that employees receive proper training in the future.
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Of the $1.5 million penalty, $948,000 is in civil penalties, with the rest divided between supplemental environmental projects and reimbursing CA environmental agencies for investigative and enforcement costs.
Hazards of CO2 in the WorkplaceCarbon dioxide (CO2)—a colorless, odorless, and non-flammable gas—is a simple asphyxiant, meaning it can displace the normal oxygen in breathing air and result in suffocation. Symptoms of CO2 exposure include headache and drowsiness at mild levels. At higher levels, symptoms can include rapid breathing, confusion, and increased heart rate and blood pressure.
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