Prosecutors have long neglected to hold corporate executives accountable for chronic mistakes that kill and injure workers and customers. Rena Steinzor's first-of-its-kind book analyzes five industrial catastrophes that have killed or sickened consumers and workers or caused irrevocable harm to the environment. From the Texas City refinery explosion to the Upper Big Branch mine collapse to the destruction of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig and extending to incidents of food and drug contamination that have killed or injured hundreds, the root causes of these preventable disasters include crimes of commission and omission. In accessible and jargon-free language, Steinzor recommends innovative interpretations of existing laws to elevate the prosecution of white-collar crime at the federal and state levels.
In 2013, about 25,000 Maryland workers suffered on-the-job injuries severe enough to force them to miss a day or more of work; 78 of them actually died from their injuries. Year after year, a few tragic fact patterns repeat more often than you might expect: arborists crushed by falling trees, construction workers tumbling from ladders and roadwork crews run over by passing motorists.