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A pro-labor group reported that Tesla’s non-union factory in Silicon Valley had suffered an 87 percent higher injury rate than the unionized auto industry average in 2014-15.
Worksafe, Inc., whose lawyers won the COSH Social Justice Award, filed a report on May 24 titled, “Analysis of Tesla Injury Rates: 2014 to 2017.” The report found that Tesla’s 2014 serious injury rate was 69 percent higher in 2014, and its serious injury rate in 2015 was 103 percent higher than the average of U.S. unionized auto plants.
Worksafe describeS itself as a California non-profit organization that specializes in workplace health and safety issues. It was reportedly first contacted by Tesla workers in April to perform a comparative analysis with other U.S. auto manufacturers.
But despite suffering its own technical challenges, the shadowy non-profit’s expose was immediately picked up by virtually every mainstream media outlet. Astonishingly, a Google search of the report’s title found 10,100,000 results within 24 hours after release.
A deeper reading of the Worksafe report suggests that Tesla’s “total recordable incidence rate” (TRIR), the most important workman’s compensation standard, indicates that in 2015, the Tesala TRIR of 8.1 per hundred workers was only 31 percent higher than the 6.7 per hundred for the automobile manufacturing industry as a whole.
The union-supportive Worksafe report also does not comment that since 2014, Tesla has been operating like a technology start up. Unlike the work rules of the mature U.S. auto industry, Tesla factory workers have been involved in varied activities that could cause more injures, like moving equipment, building assembly lines, launching new vehicles.
The United Auto Workers (UAW) supposedly sent union organizers from Detroit to the Tesla factory in California, after factory worker Jose Moran posted a sophisticated article on the left-leaning Medium in February 2016 to…