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U.S. Steel, regulators settle lawsuit

U.S. Steel will pay two Mon Valley workers $1,350 in back pay and change its injury reporting policy as part of the settlement of a lawsuit brought by the U.S. Department of Labor in February.

The federal agency sued on behalf of John Armstrong, who worked at the Irvin plant in West Mifflin, and Jeff Walters, who worked at the steel producer’s Clairton coke plant. Both had been docked pay for not immediately reporting injuries they suffered on the job. They told federal regulators they did not report the injuries because they didn’t realize at the time of their accidents that they were hurt.

At the time, U.S. Steel’s policy required workers to immediately report injuries. Those who didn’t were disciplined. Labor Department officials alleged the policy was unreasonable because workers often do not realize they are injured until days later. As part of the settlement, U.S. Steel agreed to change its policy. The company now requires workers to report injuries before they leave the plant or within eight hours of discovering their injury, whichever comes first.

Mr. Armstrong will receive $877 in back wages and interest while Mr. Walters will receive $472. U.S. Steel also agreed to rescind disciplinary action against a third worker at its tubular plant in Lorain, Ohio.

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