Tue, Nov 07, 2017 - Page 3 News List

Kerry logistics accused of work-related injury cover-up

By Lin Chia-nan  /  Staff reporter

Kerry TJ Logistics Co (嘉里大榮物流) illegally asked one of its drivers to deliver chemicals, but refused to take responsibility after the driver was injured by the alkaline liquid, Logistical Labor Rights Self-help Association chairman Tseng Yu-cheng (曾堉誠) said yesterday.

The company on Nov. 3 last year asked an employee surnamed Tai (戴) to deliver 10 barrels of silane — a flammable alkaline substance — from Pingtung County’s Chaojhou Township (潮州) to Sinyuan Township (新園) without telling him what the cargo would be, Tseng said at a news conference on behalf of Tai, adding that the company did not even have a license to deliver the dangerous substance.

Later, when Tai was moving one of the barrels, chemicals spilled out, injuring his face and other parts of his body, Tseng said, adding that Tai has been diagnosed with the skin disease rosacea.

When Tai sought occupational injury compensation from the Ministry of Labor, the ministry rejected his application because it chose to believe a “false” document presented by the company, Tseng said.

In a transcript of a conversation between the company and two customers that Tseng showed at the news conference, the cargo was described as fodder for pigs, rather than a dangerous substance.

However, the accounts of the two recipients, surnamed Chien (簡) and Sung (宋), were false, as they had conspired with the company, Tseng said.

Tai said he had worked at the company for about 14 years until he resigned in September this year, lamenting the company’s indifference to his grievance.

“All I want is the truth,” Tai said, adding that the ministry should have probed deeper into the case before reaching a conclusion.

Tai presented a response by the ministry’s Bureau of Labor Insurance dated Oct. 20.

After consulting dermatologists, the bureau concluded that Tai’s skin condition had emerged three years ago and therefore could not have been caused by the spill, the letter said.

Tai could file an administrative appeal within 30 days if he is not satisfied with the bureau’s decision, it added.

Tseng and Tai, who said the bureau had made a rash judgement, yesterday submitted a petition to the Executive Yuan urging it to launch a new investigation into the case.

Tai in September pressed charges against the company for alleged document forgery at the Pingtung District Prosecutors’ Office, Tseng said, adding that they would seek help from the Legal Aid Foundation to file an administrative appeal against the bureau.

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