Trump International Hotel, Files WARN notice, Pays Penalty After Las Vegas Window Washer’s Death

Trump International Hotel

Trumo Ruffin LLC, the owner of the Trump International Hotel, agreed to pay a $630 penalty to settle a workplace violation related to the fatal fall of a window washer in 2018. 

The settlement was approved was mandated by the Nevada Occupational Safety and Health Administration after it was found out that the hotel had no paperwork showing that the anchorage was correctly placed.

Trump Hotel is co-owned by the billionaire casino mogul Phil Ruffin, owner of the Treasure Island, and managed by the sons of President Donald Trump, Donald Jr., and Eric. The hotel is one of those casinos who filed an appeal to the Nevada Department of Employment, Training, and Rehabilitation’s (DETR) Employment Security Division to grant permission for a mass layoff.

The move was in line with the legislation, Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN), that requires companies with more than 100 employees to issue warnings if termination to employees 60 days before the effectivity.

Trump Hotel files WARN notice

Employees of casinos in Las Vegas received WARN notice from their employers, stating that they no longer have a job to return to during the reopening. The casinos included Trump International, along with Sahara, Treasure Island, and M Resort.

The novel coronavirus had massive impact on employment.

The unemployment rate of Nevada has increased by 25.3 percent in May, despite the decline in the unemployment rate in the country from 13.3 percent to 11.1 percent.  The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported last week that the country added 4.8 million jobs, a massive increase from the 2.5 million available jobs in May.

The Bureau claimed that jobs in the leisure and hospitality sector increased, adding 2.1 million in June. The food and drinking services have 1.5 million available jobs. Despite the hopeful figure released by the federal Bureau, the impact of the novel coronavirus in employment is evident.

M Resort announced that they would let go of their 328 employees on August 15. Treasure Island told regulators that they would lay off 414 employees starting August 14. The casinos hoped to bring as many people as they could when they opened the business in June. However, things did not turn out well because of the continuing challenges brought by the pandemic.

Settlement after the fall

The Nevada Occupational Safety and Health Administration ordered Trump International Hotel to pay the penalty for a minor violation due to the death of Jonathan Garcia, a window washer who died on December 12, 2018, while cleaning windows.

Jonathan was knocked into the building by a microburst of wind while hanging on a rope descent system anchored to the rails of the powered roof cart.  The washer struck his head and died due to a blunt force trauma. The regulators inspected the area and found out that the operators missed some paperwork. The company was fined $900, but the issue was resolved when the regulating body agreed to a lesser penalty.

Sally Ortiz, the lawyer for the Nevada Division of Industrial Relations, said the penalty was lowered since the visual inspection found out that the equipment was properly working. It is not a contributing factor to the accident.

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