An appeals court think that an employee was not entitled to workers compensation benefits for the serious injury he sustained because he violated a known safety rule.
Jones v. Crothall Laundry the Virginia Court of Appeals in Alexandria on Tuesday with a State Workers' Compensation Commission decision that an employee's claims were violated because he failed to follow an enforced rule.
Inc., based in Wheeling, Illinois. At the plant, a chain link fence dangerous machinery, and employees were instructed to enter through the interlock gate in the fence, which was designed to deactivate the machinery upon opening. On Oct. 14, 2017, Mr. Jones bypassed the gate and entered the area through a separate opening, and his leg was pinned against a conveyer belt by a moving piece of machinery, causing him to sustain a serious injury.He filed a claim for medical and disability benefits, which his employer rejected for Mr. Jones' failure to follow a safety rule. A deputy commissioner found that Mr. Jones' action was the proximate cause of his injury and denied him benefits.
Mr. Jones requested a review by the commission, which unanimously affirmed with the deputy commissioner's ruling. He appealed, but the Virginia Court of Appeals affirmed with the commission's decision.
Jones' violation of the relevant safety rule caused his injury. If the employee had entered through the gate, rather than a small opening not designed for ingress, the accident would not have occurred.
Although Mr. Jones argued about the enforcement of the safety rule requiring employees to enter the fenced area through the gate, several managers testified that the rule was enforced and that employees caught entering the area without opening the gate to which the equipment would be terminated. However, the appeals court found that the employer enforced the known safety rule.
Crothall Laundry could not be reached for comment.