Details Of The Georgia Food Processing Plant Accident

Clay Curtis
January 31, 2021

A liquid nitrogen leak at a northeastern Georgia poultry plant killed at least six people and led to the hospitalization of at least 10 others, officials said on Thursday. Poultry processors typically keep liquid nitrogen for their refrigeration systems, according to FOX 23 News.

Brackett added that firefighters and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration are investigating the cause of the leak.

First responders who arrived at the Prime-Pak Foods plant in Gainesville after a report that people had suffered burns found many employees had evacuated. Foundation Food Group is a privately-owned company based in Gainesville with four facilities in the area.

Hall County Sheriff's Office spokesperson Derreck Booth said officials were trying to notify the families of the deceased.

"Those lost today include maintenance, supervisory and management team members".

Three patients are in the critical care unit, one is in the emergency department and the other five are in fair condition, the hospital spokesman said.

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There are now 591 people in hospital, including 112 in the ICU. "It's up to each one of us to maintain our vigilance". Children's school-related indoor and outdoor sports and performances will also be allowed to go ahead on that date.

"Preliminary indications are that a nitrogen line ruptured inside the facility", Nicholas Ancrum, the vice president of human resources at Foundation Food Group, said in a news conference-calling the incident a "tragic accident". By the time the first responders arrived at the site, numerous workers were already gathered outside the poultry plant.

Workers who had fled the plant were gathered outside when firefighters responded to the leak Thursday morning, Bracket said.

Prime Pak Foods has merged into Foundation Food Group early this month. But the facility, which processes chicken products, changed hands to Foundation Food Group on January 1, officials said. Two other citations in 2017 involved employees who had fingers amputated by machinery.

One firefighter remained hospitalized until late Thursday.

Fourteen American workers died from asphyxiation linked to nitrogen in 12 workplace accidents recorded between 2012 and 2020, according to OSHA. But Brackett said he is doing well and ready to go home tomorrow. A bus took about 130 workers to a church to be checked for injuries.

Several facilities in the vicinity of the plant have been closed, including a nearby elementary school. "May God be a hand of peace, comfort and healing in the days ahead".

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