On July 25, 2012, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued a news release indicating that it had ordered Union Pacific Railroad Company to pay a Railroader $25,000.00 in punitive damages for imposing a 10 day suspension for reporting an on-the-job injury. The Railroader suffered a serious injury that included the loss of two teeth and facial lacerations when coupled cars came apart as they were being moved in the yard. OSHA determined that the Railroad imposed the discipline even though the Railroader was not at fault. Charles Adkins, OSHA’s regional adminstrator in Kansas City stated that “While OSHA is best known for ensuring the safety and health of employees, it is also a whistleblower protection agency.”
OSHA’s press release can be found here.
By Matt Darby