Regions Fined In Scalding Incident

Regions Fined In Scalding Incident 


Regions Hospital was fined $75,000 by the state occupational safety administration after an investigation into a fatal scalding accident revealed apparent safety violations, an OSHA spokesperson said.

Tracy J. Kraling, 31, of Roseville, Minn. died after she became trapped in a walk-in washer and was sprayed with 180-degree water on Nov. 4, 2004. An autopsy revealed her death was directly caused by the burns.

The cage sanitizer was used by the hospital's animal research lab to sterilize equipment such as rat cages, water bottles and sipper tubes. It was built in 1980, a hospital spokesperson said last year.

The Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry's Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued three citations against the hospital on March 31, according to department spokesperson James Honerman.

The violations were with regard to equipment exit design and construction; general standards of machine operation; and the ability to turn off a piece of equipment without leaving it in operation.

Each citation carries a fine of $25,000.

The hospital contested the citations on April 21, Honerman said. If a settlement cannot be reached, the matter may be presented before an administrative law judge.

After the accident, a former manager at Regions Hospital alleged she urged the institution to replace the washer, which she described as faulty and "a hazard waiting to happen."

At the time, Honerman said there had been no complaints on record about the washer.


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