In June of 2020 a driver for a Houston mobile crane truck company was fired after refusing to drive in excess of federal limits. The truck driver told his boss he felt he was fatigued and could not drive another shift without possibly putting other drivers at risk. According to the OSHA investigation, the employee had worked 19 hours the day prior and could not get the required time off before being forced to return to work.
A federal whistleblower investigation was launched after the employee filed a claim with the U.S. Department of Labor’s OSHA. The Houston Crane Rental Company was forced to pay $14,000 in back wages, interest and compensatory damages, $10,000 in punitive damages for terminating a worker who was expressing their rights under Federal law.
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Attorney Domingo Garcia applauds this employee for doing the right thing and refusing to drive tired. So many people are killed each year because of fatigued drivers, but the reality is that many truck drivers are fatigued because of pressures placed on them by truck owners and companies.
If you are ever injured in a Houston Truck Accident you should call my Houston Law Office right away.
Employee Files Whistleblower Complaint with OSHA: Wins 24k in Wages and Damages
OSHA News Release – Region 6
U.S. Department of Labor
“Crane Masters Inc. punished a driver who refused to jeopardize their safety and that of others on the road by violating federal laws that restrict how many hours a truck driver may operate a commercial vehicle each day,” said OSHA Regional Administrator Eric Harbin in Dallas. “Commercial truck drivers, mechanics and other workers are critical to our nation’s transportation infrastructure and our economy, but they should never be forced to put themselves or others at risk because of an employer’s concern for profit, or fear retaliation for exercising their legal rights.”
Crane Masters provides hydraulic truck cranes and rigging services to several industries, including construction, oil and gas, freight transportation and chemical manufacturing. It has operated for 20 years and serves the greater Houston area.