October 21, 2014

BNSF ordered to pay $225k to terminated worker

KANSAS CITY, Kan. – Burlington Northern Santa Fe LLC wrongfully terminated an employee in Kansas City after he reported an injury to his left shoulder, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration. The company has been found in violation of the Federal Railroad Safety Act*, and OSHA ordered the company to pay [...]

OSHA orders BNSF to pay $526,000 to fired workers

OSHA logo; OSHA

DENVER – Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway has been ordered to pay more than $526,000 in back wages and other damages to two workers following an investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration. OSHA found that the company, based in Fort Worth, Texas, was in violation of the whistleblower provisions [...]

Train conductor wins whistleblower case

OSHA logo; OSHA

A Canadian National Railway conductor who says he was wrongfully fired in 2013 could be getting his job back. “This was a whistleblower lawsuit because I was singled out and wrongfully terminated,” Wayne Laidler said. “I felt it was important to pursue the case to bring to light the way corporate America treats their employees. [...]

Grand Trunk, UP ordered to pay whistleblowers

OSHA logo; OSHA

CHICAGO – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has found Grand Trunk Western Railway Co. and Union Pacific Railroad Co. in violation of the Federal Railroad Safety Act for suspending and/or disciplining five workers following the reporting of workplace injuries or illnesses. “When employees are disciplined for reporting workplace injuries, safety [...]

OSHA finds Illinois Central violated whistleblower law

JACKSON, Miss. – A whistleblower investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration determined that Illinois Central Railroad Co., by conducting a disciplinary hearing, retaliated against a worker for reporting a work-related injury, which is in violation of the whistleblower protection provisions of the Federal Railroad Safety Act. “Railroad workers have the legal [...]

Pan Am Railways violated whistleblower rights

BOSTON – The U.S. Department of Labor has ordered Pan Am Railways Inc. to pay $50,000 in compensatory and punitive damages, as well as take corrective action, on behalf of an injured worker. The North Billerica-based commercial railroad adversely charged the worker with lying when he filed a Federal Railroad Safety Act complaint with the [...]

Judge blasts UP, awards worker $310K

Chastised for its “reprehensible conduct” Union Pacific railroad has been ordered to pay nearly $310,000 to a North Platte man who was fired after a co-worker ran over his foot. A federal judge has ruled that UP, which is headquartered in Omaha, displayed “blatant disregard” for a federal whistleblower law which allows railroad workers to [...]

OSHA slams Norfolk Southern again

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WASHINGTON – Norfolk Southern Railway Co. has been ordered to pay $1,121,099 to three workers following an investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration, which found that the company violated the whistleblower provisions of the Federal Railroad Safety Act. Two investigations, conducted by OSHA staff in Chicago and Pittsburgh, found [...]

No defense for violating worker rights

OSHA logo; OSHA

Even when railroads return workers to their jobs with full back pay after wrongly terminating them for suffering a workplace injury, significant monetary sanctions may still be imposed by the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Case in point is Norfolk Southern, which was ordered to pay damages in excess of $580,000 [...]

BNSF intimidation alleged to extend to witnesses

The UTU and the Sheet Metal Workers International Association (SMWIA), along with two other rail labor organizations, have filed a complaint with the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), alleging BNSF has expanded its harassment and intimidation of injured workers to include the targeting of witnesses. In recent months, OSHA has imposed [...]