February 26, 2012
Business Employment Law - HRM 510
Dr. Zelphia A. Brown, SPHR, Instructor
Assignment # 4- R. Williams Construction Co. v. OSHRC
1. What were the legal issues in this case? This case is based around the laws and regulations of OSHA. OSHA is an Occupational Safety and Health Act that has been put into place to ensure the safety of employees while on the job. These regulations are put into place to help reduce the number of on the job injuries and death. In this case, Williams Construction was put under investigation after a trench collapse, which resulted in the death of one employee and a serious injury in another. After the investigation Williams was charged with four OSHA violations that all resulted in expensive fines. The issues that arose from the investigation included; the failure to instruct employees and managers on how to recognize and avoid hazardous work conditions, the failure to ensure that employees did not have to travel more than twenty five feet to a safe zone, the failure to have a “competent person” that was specifically trained in trench safety and the final violation was the failure to make sure that the walls of the evocation were either sloped or supported. It is the belief of OSHA that if these regulations were followed that this tragic accident could have been avoided. The legal issue here is whether or not the courts and the construction company itself should up hold the violations of specific OSHA standards. 2. Explain what the employer did or failed to do that violated the OSH Act. The first violation that was brought against Williams was the failure to provide instructions to employees and their managers about how to recognize and avoid un safe working conditions. This violation is basically stating that the company did not provide enough training to their employees to ensure that the job cite was safe. This standard set in by...