Tesla Probed by California Regulator on Workplace Conditions

  • State doesn’ t disclose details, including exactly what triggered probe
  • Company denied report recently that it underreported injuries

California’ s Division of Occupational Protection and Health has opened a study into Tesla Inc. following a record about worker protections at the company’ s lone auto plant within Fremont, California.

The state agency “ takes seriously reports of office hazards and allegations of employers’ underreporting recordable work-related injuries plus illnesses” and “ currently comes with an open inspection at Tesla, ” said Erika Monterroza, a spokeswoman for the state’ s industrial relationships department.

California requires employers to keep what are called Log 300 records of injuries and ailments. Monterroza said that while the state doesn’ t disclose details of open home inspections, they typically include a review of employers’ Log 300 records and investigations to ensure that serious injuries are documented within eight hours as needed by law.

A story immediately by the Center for Investigative Reporting’ s Reveal alleged that Tesla failed to report serious injuries upon legally mandated reports, making the numbers appear better than they really were. The website cited former associates of Tesla’ s environment, safety and health team saying Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk ’ s personal preferences were usually invoked as reason not to tackle potential hazards.

Tesla’ s Pushback

Tesla pushed back again against the story in a lengthy blog post on Monday, calling this “ an ideologically motivated assault by an extremist organization operating directly with union supporters to produce a calculated disinformation campaign against Tesla. ” The United Auto Employees union has been trying to organize Fremont workers for more than a year .

In responding to news of California’ s investigation, Tesla said within an emailed statement Wednesday that the injuries rate at Fremont was less than when Toyota Motor Corp. plus then-General Motors Corp. operated the particular factory with UAW-represented workers.

“ We care significantly about the safety and well-being in our people and strive to do better every single day, ” the company said.

California’ s Division of Work-related Safety and Health, known as CAL/OSHA, opened its inspection late Wednesday. Investigations can be triggered by a quantity of reasons, including internal complaints through employees. The agency declined to express what triggered its latest