Over the weekend, a carbon monoxide leak in a Long Island Legal
Sea Foods restaurant resulted in 27 hospitalizations and one death.
Now the head of the upscale chain is trying to pin the blame for
the leak—the result of a defective heating system, authorities
inadequate government regulations.
New York state fire code requires carbon monoxide detectors in
locations where people sleep but not in restaurants, shops, or
other commercial establishments. In a statement Sunday, Roger
Berkowitz, president and CEO of Legal Sea Foods, said the tragedy
“highlights the inadequacy of the codes for carbon monoxide
detectors in commercial spaces.”
How about the inadequacy of Legal Sea Foods’ efforts to protect
its customers and workforce? Conspicuously lacking from Berkowitz’s
statement was any hint of personal responsibility for the
Regardless of whether you think the government has a legitimate
interest in requiring carbon monoxide detectors, it’s absurd to
suggest this tragedy is rooted in a failure of regulatory
oversight. The government shouldn’t need to hold business owners’
hands and walk them through every single step of creating a safe
The Long Island mall in which Legal Sea Foods operates
is fitted with multiple carbon monoxide detectors, according to
Newsday. And it seems the mall’s owners got the gumption
to do this without any sort of legal requirement. After all, not
killing or sickening employees and customers is only good business
sense. And pumping deadly combustion gases into your workplace is
already against the law.
$25 and 10 minutes of forethought, this Legal Sea Foods
tragedy could have been prevented. Instead, the restaurant’s
leadership decided to meet only the bare minimum of safety
requirements—and that’s on them.
from Hit & Run http://ift.tt/1fja4rN