U.S. Department of Labor Orders CSX Transportation Inc. to Pay Worker Drawing Attention to Safety Concerns
A Jacksonville, Florida company owes nearly $222K in back wages and damages after an OSHA investigation finds a pattern of retaliation.
- By Shereen Hashem
- Jul 06, 2021
An OSHA investigation found that CSX Transportation violated the Federal Railroad Safety Act and demonstrated a pattern of retaliation after firing a worker in December of 2019 for reporting safety concerns. According to a press release, OSHA ordered the company to pay $71,976 in back wages, interest and damages as well as $150,000 in punitive damages.
“CSX Transportation’s actions are unacceptable,” said OSHA Regional Administrator Eric Harbin in Dallas. “Federal law protects employees who report hazards in the nation’s transportation sector and OSHA is committed to enforcing these rights to keep workers safe.”
This investigation is the most recent example of CSX retaliating against workers for reporting safety concerns. OSHA ordered the company to reinstate the employee who reported an “unsafe customer gate and an on-the-job injury” and pay more than $95,000 in back wages and $75,000 in punitive damages. The press release states there are similar whistleblower investigations that resulted in payments and reinstatements of both back wages and damages in the New York region in 2016 and 2010.
The Florida-based transportation company is one of the nation’s leading transportation suppliers. The company provides rail-based transportation services including traditional rail service and intermodal containers and trailers. CSX operates on about 20,000 route miles of track in 23 states.
OSHA’s Whistleblower Protection Program enforces the protection of employees from retaliation of reporting safety hazards and violations within the companies they work for. Learn more here.
Shereen Hashem is the Associate Content Editor for Occupational Health & Safety magazine.