Employer Aware Of Hazardous Working Condition
OHIO LAWYERS WEEKLY
December 17, 2001
$3 Million Settlement An employee suffering from multiple injuries sustained in a workplace accident agreed to a $3 million settlement with the defendant employer in an intentional tort case.
The 21-year-old plaintiff was unloading boxes in a dark area next to a wall when a payloader, operated by another employee, rounded a corner, struck the plaintiff and pinned him against the wall. The plaintiff spun around, landed face down on the ground and was run over by the payloader with both tires on the left side of his body.
He suffered multiple facial fractures, brain injury and multiple injuries to the left side of his body. Permanent injuries, according to the plaintiff, include, forgetfulness, confusion, speech difficulties, loss of smell, vision impairment and emotional volatility.
The payloader was used by employees to move heavy loads of materials. According to the plaintiff, the machine was old, constantly being repaired and did not comply with plant rules and regulations. The plaintiff alleged that, at the time of the accident, the lights on the payloader were not working and the back-up alarm had never worked. Furthermore, the operators could not see behind them while backing up the heavy machinery.
According to the plaintiff, plant management had been informed on numerous occasions of the faulty equipment, bad lighting and hazardous working conditions. The plaintiff further alleged that the dangerous work environment caused several near accidents and many employees agreed that someone was going to be injured under the working conditions.
The plant manager admitted they had waited too long to respond to the problems presented by the employees. The plaintiff agreed to a $3 million settlement, claiming $420,000 in medical expenses and $50,000 in lost wages.
Type of Action: Employer Intentional Tort
Type of Injuries: Multiple facial fractures, brain injury and multiple injuries on left side of body
Court/Case Number/Date: Lorain County Common Pleas Court/No. 99CV122750/Nov. 1, 2001
Caption: Charles Slone v. Rock Creek Aluminum, et al.
Judge, Jury or ADR: N/A
Name of Judge: Thomas Janas
Verdict or Settlement: Settlement
Allocation of Fault: N/A
Last Offer: N/A
Last Demand: N/A
Attorneys for Plaintiff: W. Craig Bashein, Cleveland
Insurance Carrier: The Hartford and Zurich
Plaintiff’s Experts: N/A