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An Ohio appellate court agreed with a trial court that an employer could not be held liable, under an intentional tort theory, for serious injuries sustained by an employee who suffered amputation of both legs when two bundles of steel, each weighing over 5,000 pounds, fell on his legs and trapped him under a delivery truck in a work-related accident. The employee sued the employer in tort, claiming the bundles had been improperly stacked in a cramped area in such a fashion that injury to an employee was substantially certain to occur. The court disagreed, noting that the accident that caused the employee’s injuries was the first and only accident of that nature that the employer had ever experienced in its 40-year corporate history. Discussing Ohio Rev. Code § 2745.01, which governs employer intentional torts in Ohio, and citing numbers of earlier cases, including Jones v. VIP Dev. Co., 15 Ohio St.3d 90, 15 Ohio B. 246, 472 N.E.2d 1046 (1984), the court indicated the employee’s injuries were the result of a tragic accident, and at most, the evidence showed that the accident may have been avoided had certain precautions been taken. The evidence did not show, however, that the employer deliberately intended to injure the employee.
Thomas A. Robinson, J.D., the Feature National Columnist for the LexisNexis Workers’ Compensation eNewsletter, is the co-author of Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law (LexisNexis).
LexisNexis Online Subscribers: Citations below link to Lexis Advance. Bracketed citations link to lexis.com.
See Harris v. Benjamin Steel Co., Inc., 2015-Ohio–1499; 2015 Ohio App. LEXIS 1442 (Apr. 20, 2015) [2015-Ohio–1499; 2015 Ohio App. LEXIS 1442 (Apr. 20, 2015)]
See generally Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, § 103.04 [103.04]
Source: Larson’s Workers’ Compensation Law, the nation’s leading authority on workers’ compensation law.
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