Brief - Case Study Example

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The petitioner is seeking the United States of Appeals to revert an order issued by the respondent that it desecrated the general clause duty on…
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Continental Oil Company vs. Occupational safety and Health Review Case brief: The petitioner in this case is continental oil company while the respondent is the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. The petitioner is seeking the United States of Appeals to revert an order issued by the respondent that it desecrated the general clause duty on Occupational safety and Health Act. The commission had ruled that the oil company failed to protect its employees from hazardous incidents, following an explosion that occurred in one of its premises that resulted to the death of three people. However the court of appeal senior judge, Phillips affirmed the decision held by the commission.
The Labor Secretary has been given the constitutional powers to assess whether the employer has observed the necessary precautions to ensure employees safety in work place. Also the commission was tasked with constitutional powers to review such cases when they occur and deliver its ruling. Also the decision to determine which measure is safe for employees environment is left to the employer but not limited only to his knowledge but also to the familiarity of risks in the industry (Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, § 5(a) (1),).
The company’s preventive measures simply involved the use of a single terminal manager to supervise the facility. The company used tanks to deliver petroleum products from one location to another. The scheduling of the delivery systems was scheduled months prior to delivery. It is a requirement for the terminal manager to be present on duty an hour before delivery to ensure the capacity of empty tanks available. However it’s not mandatory for him to be present during delivery. His presence is required on completion of delivery. Thus, probably anything can go wrong during the delivery time. The terminal manager is also tasked with stopping of any delivery if deemed necessary even with a just a phone call away.
At the date of the accident there was an overflow during the delivery period. And when the terminal manager arrived tried to make his way to close the valves despite advice from firefighters not to do so. After he proceeded unluckily there was an explosion which led to his death and two other staffs from the nearby plant.
Judge Phillips ruled that: from the evidence presented it was evident that the continental oil company was aware of the dangers that spill over can cause. Its inability to put in place automatic detection systems which can close the valves in the event of a spillage detected. There wasn’t enough manual labor to constantly monitor progress even during delivery. These facts rendered the company to be liable to its actions and had failed to provide adequate safety on the workplace for its employees. Hence, affirmed the order of the Commission; that the continental oil company violated the general duty clause rule.
C.A.6, 1980. Continental Oil Company v. Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission: 630 F.2d 446, 8 O.S.H. Cas. (BNA) 1980, 1980 O.S.H.D. (CCH) P 24,745 Read More
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