An investigative report published by Tom Meyer at WKYC news recently brings to light problems with Ohio’s current work injury laws. The report goes on to discuss how every week an Ohio employee dies due to a work-related injury.
One company even stated that their employee passed away due to poor diet and not due to a 30-ton steel coil falling onto him.
And for these workers, it appears that accident law is not on their side. According to ORC 2745.01, employers can’t be held liable for the death of an employee unless it can be proven it was done to intentionally injure the person. There are only a few exceptions to this rule.
The law, otherwise known as employer intentional tort law, prevents grieving families from filing a wrongful death lawsuit against an employer.
Records obtained from OSHA show that some companies have more than a hundred safety violations on their record. Some of these fines are as small as a few thousand dollars – a drop in the bucket to companies making hundreds of million dollars every year.
When there is no risk of lawsuit and the penalties are small fines, there is little incentive to ensure a safe working environment for employees. This needs to change. Companies should be held responsible for the safety of their workers.