July 29, 1988 |
A class-action lawsuit was filed Thursday to end California's 200,000-case backlog of workers' compensation claims. So great is the backlog that the state Department of Industrial Relations measures unprocessed claims in terms of linear feet. At last count in March, there were 384 feet of unprocessed claims, 152 of which were recorded in the Los Angeles office. The suit said two other offices with large backlogs are Van Nuys, with 78 feet of unprocessed claims, and Santa Ana, with 66-plus feet.
November 15, 1987
Two explosions ripped through a chemical plant in Pampa, Tex., killing three people, injuring 37 and touching off massive fires, authorities said. One worker was missing. At least 25% of the Hoechst Celanese Chemical Co. plant burned so hotly that firefighters could not get closer than a half-mile from the plant and decided to let it burn itself out, Mayor David McDaniel said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 25, 1987 |
An explosion ripped through a Mobil Oil Co. refinery in Torrance with earthquake-like force Tuesday, spewing balls of flame and metal about 300 feet into the early evening sky and blowing out the windows of several nearby homes. Despite the force of the blast--at 190th Street and Crenshaw Boulevard--which was felt several miles away, there were only two injuries to plant employees reported. One unidentified man suffered a minor eye wound and was treated at the 730-acre refinery.
September 7, 1993 |
By law, California's occupational safety and health program (Cal/OSHA) investigates industrial accidents in which workers are killed or seriously injured. The outcomes of those cases can vary greatly. Under a schedule strengthened last year, a company can be fined up to $7,000 for each serious violation of health and safety standards, and $70,000 for repeated and willful violations. Rarely, however, are the maximum fines imposed.
July 3, 2013 |
As investigators swarm the former gold-mining town of Yarnell, Ariz., to examine the fateful decisions leading up to the deaths of 19 firefighters from the Granite Mountain hotshots, their presence is unlikely to ease tensions among the survivors. More than a decade ago, a similar blaze whipped through a canyon 30 miles north of Winthrop, Wash. Four firefighters died in circumstances eerily similar to those at Yarnell, killed in their emergency shelters as a fast-moving fire burned over them.
March 10, 1989 |
A federal judge Thursday fined Ashland Oil Inc. a record $2.25 million for a 1988 oil spill that fouled two rivers in three states and threatened to disrupt drinking water supplies for more than 1 million people. Justice Department officials said it was the biggest penalty ever imposed against a company for a fuel spill. "It was something more than simple negligence that the company was guilty of," U.S. District Judge Gustave Diamond said.
July 16, 1987 |
The deaths of six civilian workers at National Steel & Shipbuilding Co. here is providing the first major test of the new federal occupational safety and health program launched in California to replace the California program abolished by Gov. George Deukmejian. The accident, the worst in the shipyard's history, occurred shortly after midnight last Thursday when a crane-operated steel basket carrying 12 men fell nearly 30 feet to the deck of the combat support ship Sacramento.
May 7, 1988 |
Alert to the wariness of this growing suburban community, a Pacific Engineering & Production Co. official described as "highly unlikely" Friday the possibility that the firm will build a rocket fuel plant here to replace the one leveled this week by powerful explosions. Pacific Engineering counsel Keith Rooker said locations in more remote regions of Nevada, as well as in Texas and Utah, are under consideration for a replacement plant.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 10, 1987 |
When three San Diego construction workers died in trench collapses at beach area job sites in October, 1982, the business community got a rare shock. Breaking from a tradition that made administrative fines and civil lawsuits the only punishment for industrial deaths, San Diego city prosecutors pressed criminal charges against the laborers' bosses.
March 19, 1988 |
An explosion and flash fire in the warehouse of a sugar refinery in Santa Maria burned seven workers Friday, three critically, Santa Barbara County Fire Department officials said. The explosion rocked the second floor of the six-story brick Union Sugar Co. warehouse, where about 45 men were sorting and bagging sugar.