Kodiak vessel fined over $200k for OSHA violations

A Kodiak-based seafood processing vessel has been fined $208,983 by the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration. It’s the latest in a decade of health and safety violations aboard the vessel.

East West Seafoods was fined $50,000 in 2017 after dumping raw sewage near the harbor in Kodiak, as seen here Jan. 2023. (Brian Venua/KMXT)

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the investigation into the Pacific Producer, a 169 foot factory fishing vessel, began in July of last year while it was docked in Kodiak. Members of the U.S. Coast Guard in Seattle also assisted in the investigation.

The feds cited the vessel for numerous sanitation violations, including murky, brown water in the ship’s drinking tanks, serving expired food to crew, and fish processing water leaking into dry food storage and dining areas. Other safety violations included electrical hazards such as damaged equipment, broken outlets, outlets near water, and exposed wires, as well as no forms of fire suppression. 

According to OSHA, Chris Tsabouris is the owner of East West Seafoods, which owns the Pacific Producer.  

Tsabouris is no stranger to OSHA violations – similar problems have been found on the Pacific Producer in 2012, 2014, and 2018, the latter of which included an ammonia leak. According to a Department of Labor press release, federal inspectors have documented a decade’s worth of “disgusting and dangerous” conditions aboard the vessel.

This isn’t the first time Tsabouris and East West Seafoods have faced fines either, the company was charged $50,000 and five years probation for dumping raw sewage and oily bilge water in Chiniak Bay in 2017. Tsabouris declined to comment when contacted by phone on Thursday. 

Editor’s Note: A previous version of this story misstated the name of the vessel as the Pacific Processor. It is the Pacific Producer. 

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