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Business Fined Over COVID-19 Measures, Employee Death


By Dan Hounsell Facilities Management

A workplace health investigation by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) found that an auto insurance company ignored coronavirus safety requirements and allowed others displaying symptoms to work at the same Denver location where an employee died with COVID-19. 

 

In response to a complaint of unsafe working conditions and the employee’s death, OSHA initiated an investigation on April 21, 2021, and found Fred Loya Insurance Agency Inc. did not safely distance employees, failed to implement a health and safety plan and allowed symptomatic workers to remain on site. The company faces $23,406 in proposed penalties. 

 

“Fred Loya Insurance Agency needlessly exposed employees in its Fort Collins’ office to co-workers with COVID-19 symptoms,” said Amanda Kupper, OSHA area director in Denver. “This company showed an indifference toward the safety and well-being of its employees, including one who fell victim to the coronavirus.” 

 

Based in El Paso, Texas, Fred Loya Insurance Agency Inc. is a subsidiary of Loya Insurance Group, which operates more than 500 agencies in states including Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, New Mexico, Nevada, Ohio and Texas. 

 

The company has 15 business days from receipt of citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. 

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