ATLANTA — The US Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board (CSB) provided an update this week on the liquid nitrogen leak at the Gainesville, Ga.-based Foundation Food Group Inc. plant that killed six people on Jan. 28.
CSB stated that its initial findings showed that a new cryogenic freezing system on Line 4 of the facility was the main area of examination.
The agency said they found some tools that were in the vicinity of the Line 4 immersion freezer.
“We have since learned that unplanned maintenance was being conducted on Line 4,” CSB said in its update.
Before this new freezing system, Foundation Food Group used a different type of freezing equipment that was ammonia-based. That equipment was still located near the Line 4 and had not been removed.
CSB noted that as of Feb. 1 two additional patients were released from the hospital. More than a dozen people were taken to the hospital after the initial leak.
Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is also looking into Foundation Food Group regarding the leak. During December 2020, the agency already opened an investigation against the meat processor.
In October 2020, Foundation Food Group entered into a co-packing partnership with Victory Processing Inc. and Prime-Pak Foods.