WASHINGTON - The Department of Labor has settled its whistleblower case against Brush Creek-based trucking company Mark Alvis Inc., owner Mark Alvis and dispatcher Jack Taylor for terminating an employee who refused to operate a vehicle because he was ill, fatigued and did not have sufficient remaining hours to complete a delivery.
On May 4, 2010, the employee was assigned to deliver a truck of milk to a supermarket in Murfreesboro. While preparing for the drive, he slipped and was hurt but thought the pain would go away. The next day, the employee proceeded with the delivery as planned, and upon arriving in Murfreesboro, was instructed to perform another delivery. The employee informed the dispatcher of feeling ill and fatigued, and also of not having sufficient allowable service hours remaining to make the drive according to federal regulations. The employee then returned to the company's site in Brush Creek, where he was told to remove his belongings from his truck. The settlement terms include reinstatement, a lump sum payment to the employee and assurances that no employee exercising rights protected by the Surface Transportation Assistance Act will be discharged or face any manner of discrimination.
For more information, read the press release. Employees who believe that they have been retaliated against for engaging in protected conduct may file a complaint with the secretary of labor for an investigation by OSHA's Whistleblower Protection Program. More information is available online at www.whistleblowers.gov.
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