• Mar 2, 2011
The parents of a Mazda worker who killed himself in 2007 have reached a second settlement with the company worth $770,000. The latest settlement brings the parents' total to just over $1.3 million from Mazda.
According to The Daily Mail, the auto company was found liable in the worker's death because he killed himself after being chronically overworked. According to the parents' suit, the employee was ridiculed publicly by his managers for, among other accusations taking "needless" overtime.

Mazda paid the young man's parents a separate condolence settlement in 2009. Work-related suicide is becoming a real problem in Japan, where the culture favors a workaholic mentality. In addition, many chronic overworkers suffer stress-related heart attacks and strokes.

These sorts of deaths have become common enough that the Japanese have coined a term, "karoshi," which means "exhaustion death" to describe the phenomenon. Courts have ruled that the employer can be held liable in karoshi cases, as has apparently happened with Mazda.

[Source: The Daily Mail]


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  • 34 Comments
      • 3 Years Ago
      Sad to lose a loved one.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Even 1.3 million dollars doesn't make up for the loss of a son
      Tragic
        • 3 Years Ago
        You can't put a price on a life...
      • 3 Years Ago
      Karoshi ?..........Isn't that a Suzuki sedan??
      • 3 Years Ago
      You don't see people kill themselves in US because if they don't like the job or hate the job they usually quit themselves or sue the company for mistreatment at workplace. Well there you go free money from settlement without having to kill yourself.

      Maybe the culture or maybe the workers law in those countries are different from US. But as you know Asians are crazy. Their parents are demanding and competition there are very tough if you still want to keep your job you gotta stood out at your workplace.
      • 3 Years Ago
      nothing says he was an assembly line worker. most of the overworked fatalities in Japan are "salarymen," the white collar workers including engineers, office staff, etc. The assembly line workers are on fixed shifts with overtime, and it isn't just one guy.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Prior to the Unions in the United States of America we had the same thing. Think people, is that what you want here again, if you do destroy the unions, and you will dang sure have it.
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Engo P

        You're from Canada?

        I'm so sorry.
        • 3 Years Ago
        @sabyrne88
        Every factory you mentioned are unionized in their countries.
        Sure, the union leaders on many occasions abuse their power
        but without labor union, factory workers are nothing but slaves.
        • 3 Years Ago
        tell that to all the unemployed steel workers as well as what is left of the American Automakers.........that Unions are good for America
        • 3 Years Ago
        Prior to Unions in this country sweat shops were the norm, child labor was rampant. The Unions brought this country out of the dark ages and created the middle class, bringing the 40 hour work week, time and a half time, paid vacations, pensions, safety in the work place, the right to ask your boss to be treated fairly without being fired. The plants down south would not be paying the wages they pay if not for the unions. They know if they pay lower, the people will unionize.

        The smart ass remarks do not bother me, the fact that so many of you are ignorant of the truth does however.

        • 3 Years Ago
        So all the foreign factories that aren't unionized... BMW, Toyota, Hyundai, Honda, etc. are having workers drop dead from exhaustion in our country? I must have missed that post.
        • 3 Years Ago
        If it weren't for the unions I wouldn't have to make such an extreme salary every year just to afford a decent vehicle. Unions have caused inflation of goods over these past years to astronomical proportions.

        They strong arm small businesses that are not part of a union, they buy out jobs and use market recovery to ensure fair ethics do not apply to them. I am in construction and this is rampant in my industry. Infact the Volkswagen plant in Chattanooga tn is having it's on site hospital go out for bid again because a non union electrical shop managed to have the low bid and the union wants that job so they forced it into the re bid process.

        That is what a union does for you. Corrupts and drives costs up.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Obvious union troll is obvious.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Zmatt -- thank you for a sensible comment.
        • 3 Years Ago
        That had nothing to do with lack of unionization and everything to do with a culture that forced him into a corner. It's the Japanese work ethic that went to far. As for Foxconn, yeah China needs unionization.
        • 3 Years Ago
        CoupeDeBill, completely dismissing the building-up of a society through opportunity. Unions have little to do with it. We brought ourselves up, the unions didn't bring us up. If anything they're bringing us down.

        You'd think people like you would understand just by seeing Detroit.
        • 3 Years Ago
        lol.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Agree with you wholeheartedly CoupeDeBill, but sabyrne88 makes a reasonable point.

        Just be aware though sabyrne88, without collective bargaining and unions the doors are flung open for such things. I'm amazed how Walker and Christie and the others can still argue their point. Fortunately I don't have to deal with that.

        Love living in Canada :)
        • 3 Years Ago
        Overtime was optional in this case. If someone cannot handle the job they were offered, they shouldn't have taken it and should quit if they thought they could. If they suicide, tough cookies.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Where does it say that this guy wasn't an union employee? They have unions in Japan too.

        " Work-related suicide is becoming a real problem in Japan, where the culture favors a workaholic mentality." UAW members need not worry about that ever happening in a UAW shop...just the opposite!
      • 3 Years Ago
      pity many of you guys dont know how hard it is to work in japan. here working for 9am-9pm, commute by train for two hours(of course you have to stand all the way), have a "long" three day summer holidays is nothing unusual. i really understand the worker who "had to" kill himself. theres simply no way out.
      (unions? what unions? you think they have any real power?)
      • 3 Years Ago
      I need to have kids, they seem to pay off easily.
      • 3 Years Ago
      I think most naysayers here don't realize that work has changed from 100 years ago. Before it used to be physically hard, backbreaking even, but not stressful. The work was simple and low responsibility. Now you have to have the mental precision of a computer even if you're working 80 hour weeks with no breaks, and if you make one mistake it's your job. End of story. It's not the same, anyone who says so hasn't lived this sort of work environment for an extended period of time.
      • 3 Years Ago
      There are aspects of their culture that give the employer enough strength in the relationship for this to happen. It's not as simple as one unbalanced individual.

      At least that's one cause of death no one is likely to see describing my passing.
      Early in my career I was headed in the burnout direction. I finally realized that giving my employer one and a half or two person's worth of work (via working smarter) was more than fair. They weren't going to get three people's work out of me.
      • 3 Years Ago
      No!!! You mist first say, "Please, may I?"
      judithgrayson
      • 3 Years Ago
      it is remarkable that people who are so ignorant of what unions have done for them, do not see that without protection serfdom is in their future. the near future.
      there would be no middle class without the unions. there would be no opportunity for workers to earn a fair days' pay without the unions or advance the lives of their children by sending them to college.
      i assure you that the foreclosures affecting millions of us and the unemployment that is robbing us of our very lives would not be happening if we had strong unions for white collar workers as well asin the manufacturing sector.
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