Posted On: February 22, 2010 by Steven J. Malman

Court Tells Wal-Mart to Pay Workers’ Compensation to Employee Who Was Exposed to Carbon Monoxide

A state appeals court is ordering Wal-Mart stores Inc. to pay workers’ compensation benefits to a worker who was injured when he was exposed to carbon monoxide while on the job. Donald Greg Wells sustained his injuries in 2005 while in a freezer at a Wal-Mart distribution center.

Wells says that the carbon monoxide came from welding machinery and generators that were being used to renovate the freezer, which was nonventilated. Following the work accident, he filed a workers’ compensation claim to obtain work injury benefits from his employer and sued the two contractors involved in the renovation.

Wells received a $900,000 award from his third party claim. It was at this point that Wal-Mart contended that Wells should only recover from either the civil case or the workers’ compensation claim.

The state’s Workers’ Compensation Board and an administrative law judge disagreed with Wal-Mart. The judge awarded Wells almost $441,000 in medical costs and income. The appellate court agreed with the judge’s ruling and said because Wal-Mart should receive a $126,811 subrogation credit, the company should pay wells approximately $317,000.

Carbon Monoxide Exposure
Exposure to CO, a colorless, odorless, and toxic gas can kill you. A person may not even realize the gas has infiltrated the air before the damage is done. Exposure to lower levels of CO can cause flu-like symptoms, such as dizziness, headaches, nausea, disorientation, and fatigue.

Chicago, Illinois Workers’ Compensation
If you were injured at work, you are likely entitled to Chicago, Illinois workers’ compensation benefits. This does not preclude you from filing a third party lawsuit against any other negligent party that is not your employer.

Kentucky court upholds workers comp for Wal-Mart employee, Business Insurance, February 22, 2010

Carbon Monoxide, US Environmental Protection Agency

Related Web Resources:
US Department of Labor

Wal-Mart

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