A Worker Died By Suffocation In Certified ISO Warehouse Will He Get Compensation. - CiteHR
Dinesh Divekar
Business Mentor, Consultant And Trainer
Umakanthan53
Labour Law & Hr Consultant
Raj Kumar Hansdah
Shrm, Od, Hrd, Pms
Loginmiracle
Consultant & G.m.
SAIBHAKTA
Retired From Air India
Premkumar Nair
Manager (hr)-retired
PTRC
Working With Ngo
Vivian Chandrashekar
Aast. Gen. Manager-hr
+4 Others

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If a company warehouse is certified by ISO & there is also ventilation but a worker died due to suffocation while shifting cement bag in warehouse also postmertem report is showing death due to suffocation but Inquiry commitee report shows there is no fault of warehouse owner. so will his dependant get compensation if yes why if no why.

Dear Mrityunjay,

There are few things to be noted here:

a) Death of worker happened while on duty

b) Death happened in the course of his work. I do not know whether it can be classified as "occupational hazard". However, it was not due to some chronic disease like heart disease etc

c) Post mortem report also shows that death happened due to suffocation and suffocation happened during the work.

Therefore, prima facie, we can infer that the death of workman is attributable to the employment. But then why your enquiry committee has given any contrary report? Did he fail in observing any safety precautions? If yes, then what was that? What kind of safety training he was given? When it was given and do you have evidence of training? What about your SOPs? Did his action was contrary to any laid down SOP?

ISO certification has nothing to do with the workman's compensation, please note.

Has workman's kith and kin approached you for the compensation? If yes, did you turn down the compensation? I recommend you keeping in the loop labour officer of your area. Have you sent the copy of the findings of enquiry report to the labour officer? Has he endorsed the findings?

All these questions are from legal point of view. From the organisation's culture point of view, I recommend you giving his dependants the legally admissible dues. If you fail to do that then perceptions of the employees towards the company will change and they will start looking down upon the management.

You may not pay the compensation provided that worker had failed to observe the safety precautions or there was evident transgression of the laid down SOP. In such case it may send a signal to one and all on how important the safety guidelines are what happens when workers do not observe them.

Thanks,

Dinesh V Divekar

Dear Mritunjayskt
I am surprised and shocked at the findings of the Enquiry Committee.
It shows clearly that they are biased or it is just a sham enquiry.
Denying the dependent of compensation; who lost their bread-winner of the family is not only illegal but absolutely inhuman. Such demonic companies should be penalized severely.
I hope in such a case the family brings up the matter in appropriate court.
Warm regards.

There is no doubt the kith & kin of the deceased are eligible for the compensation. Enquiry committee's decision has no locus-standi in the matter as the post-mortem report is the deciding factor, it's in the course of employment.
kumar.s.

Dear Mrityunjay,
This is in addition to what I wrote in my previous post. You have not mentioned how the accident happened. Did the cement bags fall on that worker? How many cement bags were stacked one over another? What is the area of the warehouse? How many rows and columns of bags were there? What was the breadth of aisle?
DVD

Dear members,
What enquiry committee ? Such committees are consituted by the management for the management.They did not cite the actual reason,just to appease the management or they were simply 'told' as what kind of report should be given.This can happen for two reasons.One the management does not want to pay compensation or more likely they are apprehensive of it's legal consequences such as losing license etc.However from humanitarian point of view not only compensation should be paid but also if possible a suitable job be offered to one of his dependent.
s.k.limaye/mba

This is simple, the worker died in the course and scope of his duty or while doing his work, so his benefeciary/dependent is entitled to receive compensation. Something wrong happened that leads to his death that's for sure. If the committee claimed that the warehouse owner has no fault then keep asking why it happened. An unbiased investigation should have done to refrain the incident from happening again which should have been the goal of the management or by that committee. Receiving the compensation should no longer be a question, it is clear. If the company don't like to pay, then help the family file claim to Employee Compensation Commission or any equivalent of that which is a requirement by Labor Law.
Hello,

Few things must be noted,

1) the deceased had no prior health problems due to which there were chances for suffocation in such conditions...... like say aasthama/respiratory problems, or any such problems because of which body needs more air/requirements compared to a normal person ......

2) Conditions must be proved that even a normal person or any person would be subjected to such suffocation in that environment and it is not an unusual case or an exceptional case.....

3) was there any special imbalances in the environment causing the same on that particular day/ in those few previous days, but otherwise he was not under suffocation........

3 A) incase if he had suffered even before, was it brought to the attention of the management and what were the actions taken, and if no actions were taken then the amount of negligence on part of management.......

B) despite of suffocation if the victim had failed to bring it to the notice of the management!!

4) are there any previous cases of that sort, need not be death but health problems due to suffocation suffered by other workers........

If the answers for all the above issues are negative, then you will not have the absolute claims over compensation and damages....... you can claim only compensation and not damages but will be left to the discretion of the company, but what ever the compensation has been "specified under law is assured in any case"........

our condolences for the unfortunate happening...............

Absolutely the workman is eligible for compensation. Very straigtforward case. If adequate ventilation arrangements were not available it is a big lapse on the part of the employer. With due respect to the opinions expressed by my friends above, it is clear violation and criminal also if attempts are made to find faults with the late workman, to avoid payment of compensation.
I presume that the above case falls under EC Act 1923.If so I invite the attention of friends to Sec 3(1) (b) of the Act, which says that employer will be liable for compensation for death of employee due to injury happening during the course and arising out of employment even if the employee at the time of accident was drunken or disobeying a safety order or rule ,or removed or disregarded safety guard or devices.
Varghese Mathew
Baseindia Consultants
Trivandrum 14(9961266966)


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