The Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited Amazon for warehouse injury report failures
The US Department of Labor announced Friday that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Amazon for failing to properly record certain work-related injuries and illnesses during inspections at six warehouse facilities.
OSHA issued citations against Amazon for 14 record-keeping violations, including failure to record injuries and illnesses, misclassifying injuries and illnesses, failure to record injuries and illnesses in a timely manner, and failure to provide OSHA with injury and illness records in a timely manner, According to the Department of Labor.
Amazon faces $29,008 in proposed fines, according to the Labor Department.
“Solving health and safety problems in the workplace requires that records of injuries and illnesses be accurate and transparent,” Assistant Secretary of State for Occupational Safety and Health Doug Parker said in a statement.
“Our concern is that nothing will be done to prevent a recurrence of infection if it is not on record which – in a company the size of Amazon – could have devastating consequences for a large number of workers,” Parker added.
According to Nicholas Biasi, a spokesperson for the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, the citations originated from workplace safety inspections at Amazon warehouses outside New York City, Albany, Denver, Boise, Chicago, and Orlando.
Occupational Safety and Health began inspections in July and August based on referrals from the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York.
“Those referrals relate to potential workplace risks related to, among other things, Amazon’s required workload for warehouse employees,” Biasi said.
According to the Department of Labor, Amazon has 15 business days from receiving the citation and proposed penalty to comply, request an informal conference with the OSHA district manager, or challenge the findings to the Occupational Health and Safety Review Committee.
The findings are part of an ongoing investigation.
“The safety of our employees is our top priority, and we invest hundreds of millions of dollars each year to ensure we have a robust safety program in place to protect them,” Amazon spokesperson Kelly Nantle said in response to OSHA’s findings.
Nantell continued, “Accurate record-keeping is a critical component of this program, and while we acknowledge that there may have been small management errors over the years, we were confident in the numbers we reported to the government. We are pleased that OSHA reached the same conclusion today.” .
Workers in said Amazon warehouses, which the company calls “fulfillment centers,” have complained of grueling pace, uncomfortable heat and potential for injury.
Congressmen Cory Bush, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Elizabeth Warren also sent a letter to Amazon CEO Andy Jassy on Thursday regarding the company’s “failure to improve structural integrity at the facility following its deadly December 2021 collapse,” which left six people dead. After a tornado hit the facility.
“Amazon has a responsibility to make the modest investments necessary to ensure that workers at the Edwardsville facility are protected from future disasters,” the letter read.
“Your company’s decision to rebuild the Edwardsville warehouse to the same condition it was in when six workers died there last year signals that you are once again placing your profits over worker safety,” the lawmakers wrote.
In response to the letter, Nantle said: “Over the past year, we have worked with our team, the community, and everyone affected by catastrophic storms to support them and strengthen their strength together. As part of this effort, we have strengthened and tailored our emergency response plans to meet the specific needs of individual locations, and increased the frequency of emergency drills. to employees and partners, and reevaluating the locations of severe weather catchment areas at many of our facilities to ensure they meet not only OSHA requirements, but also FEMA’s most stringent and comprehensive guidance.”
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