Employer’s Safety Violations Responsible For Worker’s Death

An Arkansas trucking and transport company was recently cited by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) for a shocking 11 health and safety and violations. These were not minor violations, rather they range from failing to properly guard workers from falling through open holes in floors to failing to maintain proper safety precautions.

Serious infractions

In this case, the company was cited for several serious violationswhich OSHA categorizes as hazards the employer knew or should have known about and there is a substantial probability that a fatality or serious physical harm could result. In this case there were seven serious violations. These violations included failing to stabilize platforms, railings and posts to prevent employees from dangerous falls.

Willful violations

In addition, there was also one extremely unfortunate willful violation in this case. This violation stemmed from the employer’s failure to properly operate a permit-required confined space program and maintain critical air monitoring equipment. Unlike serious violations, willful violations are committed when employers intentionally, knowingly or voluntarily disregard legal requirements. Employers can also be cited for willful violations when they demonstrate plain indifference to health and safety of their workers.

Carelessness can cause death

Unfortunately, the willful violation in this case involved maintaining a dangerous work environment without proper ventilation. This condition left an untrained worker unconscious due to oxygen asphyxiation. He later died. While the business has been leveled with over $100,000 in fines, these fines will do little to assuage the pain the man’s family faces in light of their loss. In this case, it appears OSHA may have simply been too late in discovering a toxic work environment.

Workplace accidents that cause serious injuries or deaths may be grounds for a lawsuit. Workers compensation attorneys have the legal knowledge you want on your side.