Thursday, July 07, 2011

Paper's records check suggests inspector went easy on firm that failed to warn workers of tornado

Following an April 4 tornado that heavily damaged TGASK, a manufacturer of rubber door and window trim for cars, in Hopkinsville, Ky., Kentucky New Era staff writer Dave Boucher dug into state inspection reports and revealed conflicts between the state inspector's employer-friendly account of the episode and the National Weather Service's account of events leading up to the tornado, including warnings that apparently were not passed along to employees

Boucher's story is an example of how journalists can help protect the public when government fails to hold responsible parties accountable, as illustrated by the inspector’s assertion: “It is not reasonable to conclude that the employer would establish a plan, train employees on the plan, and execute the plan during instances of severe weather, only to disregard the plan in this instance.” Actually, it’s perfectly reasonable, because human beings are involved and they mess up sometimes. The online story may require a subscription; if so, a scan of the print copy is here as a PDF.

No comments: