Crash Was a Driving Accident, Not a Breakfast Accident

Statute bars compensation for injury resulting from “risk unrelated to the employment to which workers would have been equally exposed outside of and unrelated to the employment in normal nonemployment life.” Risk means activity. That exclusion, like all workers’ compensation statutes, is subject to strict construction. Claimant choked on his breakfast, passed out, and crashed his work van while on his way to a work assignment. Breakfast, choking, and passing out are unrelated to the employment and part of normal nonemployment life, but driving the van to a work assignment is not, and crashing the van caused the injury. Driving the van while having breakfast violated an employer safety rule, for which statutes penalize claimant, but do not remove driving from the course of employment.
GARY BOOTHE, JR., Employee-Appellant v. DISH NETWORK, INC., Employer-Respondent
Missouri Court of Appeals, Southern District – SD36408

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