Truck Driver Fired for Refusing to Carry Explosives with Co-Driver who Smoked, Regains Job
An Arizona-based trucking company specializing in explosives hauling has been ordered by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to reinstate a whistleblower fired for refusing to travel with a co-driver who smoked.
M3 Transport LLC/SLT Expressway Inc. (which now operates as the Roadmaster Group) was ordered to pay the wrongly terminated employee $280,000 in back wages and interest.
The company will pay an additional $15,000 in compensatory damages and $20,000 in punitive damages.
In February 2010, the employee was fired after telling his supervisor that his new co-driver smoked on the job, which is a violation of federal regulations.
M3 Transport also violated the whistleblower provisions of the Surface Transportation Assistance Act when it terminated the truck driver.
“Firing or otherwise retaliating against workers who raise safety concerns is unacceptable and against the law,” Ken Nishiyama Atha, OSHA’s regional administrator in San Francisco, said in a prepared statement. “OSHA will not tolerate this type of behavior, and the Labor Department will actively pursue appropriate legal remedies in such cases.”
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US Department of Labor's OSHA Orders Arizona Trucking Company To Reinstate Whistleblower, Pay $315,000 in Back Wages and Damages (Occupational Safety and Health Administration)
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