June 30, 2015

OSHA finds BNSF violated whistleblower protections

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SEATTLE, Wash. – North America’s second-largest freight railroad, Burlington Northern Santa Fe LLC, must reinstate a train conductor and pay the man $536,063 in back pay, damages and attorney’s fees after a federal investigation found the rail operator retaliated against its employee after reporting a knee injury. BNSF filed disciplinary charges against the conductor after he [...]

GBW railcar services faces OSHA fines

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Two workers endured several weeks of skin graft surgery and physical therapy after suffering second-degree burns when gas vapors exploded in a railcar in December 2014 at GBW Railcar Services LLC. The car was being prepared for cleaning when an electric heater ignited the flammable gas. Seven other workers were treated for injuries and released [...]

OSHA unveils new “It’s the Law” poster

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To help ensure that workers have a voice in their workplaces and the protection they deserve, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration unveiled a new version of its “Job Safety and Health – It’s The Law!” poster. The poster informs workers of their rights, and employers of their responsibilities. “This poster emphasizes a very important [...]

UP retaliates against another injured worker

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An investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has determined that management of the Union Pacific Railroad added insult to injury when it blamed a worker in Roseville who was hurt on-the-job and then retaliated against him for reporting his injury in February 2011. Investigators established that Union Pacific violated [...]

UP again violates Federal Railroad Safety Act

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More than 200 whistleblower complaints against railroad since 2001 NORTH PLATTE, Neb. – For the third time since 2011, the Union Pacific Railroad has violated the Federal Railroad Safety Act at its yard in North Platte by disciplining employees who reported workplace injuries and sought medical attention, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and [...]

OSHA seeks nominations for Whistleblower committee

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WASHINGTON – The Occupational Safety and Health Administration today announced that nominations are being accepted for members to serve on the Whistleblower Protection Advisory Committee. OSHA is accepting nominations for six members to serve on the 12-member committee for a two-year term. The six positions will become vacant Dec. 1, 2015. Nominations will be accepted [...]

OSHA announces final rule on handling retaliation

WASHINGTON – The Occupational Safety and Health Administration today published a final rule finalizing procedures for handling whistleblower retaliation complaints filed under Section 806 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002. The SOX Act protects employees who report fraudulent activities and violations of Securities Exchange Commission rules that can harm investors in publicly traded companies. “Silencing [...]

OSHA’s guide for winter weather

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Winter weather creates a variety of hazards that can significantly impact everyday tasks and work activities. These hazards include slippery roads and surfaces, strong winds and environmental cold. Learning how to prepare for work during the winter, protect workers from the cold and other hazards that can cause illnesses, injuries, or fatalities, is essential to [...]

Metro-North violates rights of Connecticut worker

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HARTFORD, Conn. – Metro-North’s actions against an injured worker have resulted in the largest punitive damages ever in a retaliation case under the Federal Railroad Safety Act. A recent investigation by the U.S. Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration uncovered these details and revealed that the worker, who is employed as a coach cleaner [...]

BNSF ordered to pay $12K to disciplined worker

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – BNSF Railway Co. has been found in violation of the Federal Railroad Safety Act* by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration. OSHA’s investigation upheld allegations that the company disciplined an employee assigned to its station in Ottumwa, Iowa, for following a physician’s treatment plan. The company has been ordered [...]