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Lunsford, Baskin & Priebe PLLC. Motto
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3M Hit with “Willful” Safety Violations after Two Workers Die in Fatal Workplace Accidents


The tragic and horrific story of a worker who was killed at a 3M factory in Wisconsin raises questions about whether the company was “indifferent” to worker safety after being hit with “willful” safety violations. According to the Star Tribune, 3M worker Trisha Jones was killed on May 9, 2023 when she was assisting with setting up a plastic extrusion machine, which was designed to allow materials to be guided through the machine’s rollers manually. The machine’s rollers were meant to move at a slow speed during the setup of the machine, and it was designed with a safety gate. However, Jones, who was in training at the time, was caught between the rollers as she helped to set up the machine. Although other workers tried to save Jones by cutting plastic fibers and freeing her, she had already, unfortunately, suffered serious head injuries. Jones was 57 years old and had worked at the 3M factory in Prairie du Chien for 23 years. Surprisingly, and horrifically, Trisha Jones was not the only 3M worker to die at a 3M factory in recent times. In fact, in 2022, a worker at 3M’s factory in Alexandria, Minnesota was caught and crushed in a similar accident with a 3M roller machine and was killed.

According to reports, after the fatal accident in Alexandria, 3M did a corporate review and determined that the machine rollers were, indeed, hazardous to workers and were in need of safety improvements. In addition, after Jones’ 2023 death, in November, the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) hit 3M with two “willful” safety violations, a rare citation for employers to receive. 3M states that it will appeal the violations, noting, “Thought we seek to amicably resolve this matter with OSHA, we do not agree with its characterization of the situation as “willful”, as well as other aspects of its proposed citations and details of its public statements in this matter.” Trisha Jones is remembered as a hard worker who had dreams of one day owning her own café after plans to retire from her tenure at 3M at the age of 62. The tragic story raises questions over whether 3M was indifferent to worker safety, and whether “willful” safety violations for the two worker deaths will stick.

What Can Workers Do in Louisiana when They are Seriously Injured on the Job?

Trisha Jones’ story also raises questions about what workers can do when they are seriously injured on the job. In Louisiana, under state workers’ compensation laws, most workers who are seriously injured at work, and who are rendered unable to work due to their workplace injuries, are entitled to important benefits to help them heal from their injuries and go back to their regular jobs. In addition, under Louisiana workers’ compensation laws, certain dependent family members of workers who are killed in workplace accidents may be entitled to workers’ compensation death benefits.

Legal Help for Louisiana Workers and Their Families

If you were injured in a serious workplace accident in Louisiana, or your loved one was killed in a fatal workplace accident, and you are seeking benefits under Louisiana workers’ compensation laws, contact the experienced Louisiana workers’ compensation lawyers at Lunsford Baskin & Priebe, PLLC. The experienced Louisiana workers’ compensation lawyers at Lunsford Baskin & Priebe, PLLC offer a free and confidential consultation to learn about your case and to see if they can help you get workers’ compensation benefits due. Contact Lunsford Baskin & Priebe, PLLC today and speak to a lawyer about your case for free.


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