Sacramento, CA: A new year often brings changes and updates to regulations requiring the attention of employers in order to avoid the scornful gaze of the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (known variously as DOSH or Cal/OSHA). With the health and safety of employees coming into greater focus and scrutiny with each passing year, it behooves not only the employer to become conversant with the new rules, but also employees. To wit, an educated employee is better able to know if, and when his rights have been violated under OSHA if properly conversant with the rules, perhaps with help from a Cal/OSHA lawyer.
Squaw Valley, CA: The ski resort where a ski patroller died this past January has been cited by the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health for safety code violations. Fines totaling $20,250 have been levied against the operators of Squaw Valley Ski Resort. The operator, Squaw Valley Ski Holdings, is not commenting on the citations beyond sharing its intention to appeal the rulings.
Los Angeles, CA: An oil refinery fire in California in 2012 that injured five workers and sent thousands of nearby residents to the hospital has resulted in a $1 million fine assessed to Chevron Corp. under OSHA and an agreement to make $20 million in improvements to its refinery in Richmond, the site of the fire five years ago.
Pomona, CA: The continuing fallout over allegations that a major corporate bank encouraged its employees to open customer accounts without their client’s knowledge or permission has hit Wells Fargo yet again, this time through an investigation by the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health. That investigation led to a reinstatement order issued by the US Department of Labor (DOL) that will see a former Wells Fargo branch manager in Pomona reinstated to her former job and paid back wages and other costs.
Weed, CA: A forklift trainee who had been on the job four months with Crystal Geyser Roxane (CGR) in Weed, California and suffered fatal injuries when the forklift he was operating at the job site tipped over, had passed all requisite safety and evaluation tests. The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health(OSHA) nonetheless issued four citations against CGR following the death of the young trainee.
Los Angeles, CA: An OSHA whistleblower lawsuit filed by a former manager at Wells Fargo & Co. (Wells Fargo) in California has ended with an order by the US Department of Justice(DOJ) that the plaintiff be re-hired by his former employer, together with the repayment of about $5.4 million in back pay and legal fees. The order, issued by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, is yet another blemish on an institution that has been the subject of massive amounts of ill will and bad press in recent months.
Los Angeles, CA: A California OSHA lawsuit that alleges protective surgical gowns were rendered less protective due to cost-cutting on the part of the manufacturer, is meandering its way through US District Court for the Central District of California.
June Lake, CA: It appears prevailing opinion does not quite align when it comes to regulating the safety of ski and snowboard hills in the state of California. Two experts on ski, and snowboard safety opine that federal and state regulations with regard to trail safety are either sorely lacking, or non-existent altogether. However that position is in deference to one taken by the head of a ski industry association, who holds that standards and regulations do exist, including regulations and guidelines issued by California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal / OSHA).
Santa Rosa, CA: A whistleblower lawsuit currently being litigated in California accuses Sonoma State University of improperly handling contamination from asbestos and lead in multiple buildings on the campus, and that testing according to standards required under the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (OSHA, Cal/OSHA) was inadequate.
Sacramento, CA: There is little doubt that healthcare workers, second only perhaps to police officers, are amongst the highest groups of workers potentially exposed to workplace violence. Police have to worry about aggressiveness from criminals and suspects. For the healthcare worker, aggressiveness in the workplace can originate with patients showing aggression towards their healthcare provider. For 2017, the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health Administration (Cal/OSHA) is addressing this head-on with new guidelines which could come into effect as early as January.