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Beef Jerky Manufacturer Sued for OSHA Violations

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An employee trying to help a co-worker who was seriously injured at work was fired for attempting to call 911 for help.  The employer, Lone Star Western Beef, a beef jerky manufacturer, is now being sued by the U.S. Department of Labor for several violations of federal law.  The injured employee severed part of his thumb with a saw while working, causing blood to spray over the processing area, which the employer did not clean up - a violation of federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration rules.  The employee trying to render aid reported this to the U.S. Agriculture Department. Additionally, the employee offering aid and calling 911 was told by the owner, John Bachman, to hang up on 911 and not call for help.  This employee was protected by OSHA in trying to take emergency action and to report a workplace safety and health incident.  The subsequent firing of this employee therefore violated federal law, and the employee has sued the company seeking back pay and punitive damages.  The Labor Department cited the company for multiple serious violations of workplace regulations, resulting in penalties of $4,800.00, of which the company only paid in part.

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