Regulators Call Out Amazon for Endangering Workers Safety in Warehouses

The violations found by OSHA suggest that Amazon is not complying with the safety regulations that it has agreed to abide by. This may lead to serious injuries for Amazon workers, especially in situations where speed is prioritized over safety.

In response to criticisms of Amazon’s safety record, the company has announced plans to invest money in safety upgrades for its employees. These upgrades will focus on things like training workers in safe working practices, improving communication systems between employees and supervisors, and developing new policies and procedures to address hazards. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos stressed that this investment is not a reaction to any specific incidents or complaints, but rather part of a long-term commitment to ensuring the safety of its workers.

The inspection of Amazon facilities in Deltona, Florida; Waukegan, Illinois; and New Windsor, New York found that the warehouses had failed to record and report worker injuries and illnesses. The same investigation found that six Amazon warehouse facilities had failed to meet OSHA safety standards. This hefty fine will likely compel Amazon to comply with OSHA regulations more closely.

OSHA’s continuing study of the employee injuries at the Florida warehouse underscore just how dangerous an undertaking it can be to lift and carry objects that are over 50 pounds. In one such report, employees were injured after crushing or smashing furniture with their weights, while another reported a lower leg strain sustained while using fitness equipment. All these injuries could easily have been avoided if OSHA had placed stricter safety guidelines in place in the warehouse.

OSHA claims that the on-site clinics at Amazon are prohibitive to workers receiving adequate medical care, specifically due to the waiting period for referrals. Employees have told investigators that they have had to wait three weeks after an injury before being referred to a physician at Amcare, and if an employee suffers head trauma or dizziness they are not immediately referred. This may create a barrier for injured workers seeking proper care.

The spokesperson said that Amazon denies the claims and that their warehouse employees follow all safety guidelines. The spokesperson warned that any employees who violate safety guidelines could be subject to disciplinary action.

The allegations against Amazon are serious, and the company intends to fight them. In recent months, Amazon has demonstrated its commitment to safety by reducing injury rates nearly 15%. This shows that they take their employees’ safety seriously and are willing to make any necessary changes to ensure a safe working environment.

Many Amazon warehouse workers use engineering innovations, such as stretching and huddles, to reduce the need to bend, twist and reach in ways that can cause injury. The company has stated that the federal government does not offer specific ergonomics guidance to employers, so it has invested in these innovations which have resulted in a reduction of injuries among its workforce.

Nantel is appealing their safety record to the public, emphasizing the numerous safety innovations and investments they have made over the years. The company has a Zero Workplace Injury Policy in place, and their employees report feeling safe on the job. Nantel looks forward to continuing their work towards reducing workplace injuries.

Workers at Amazon’s warehouses are often treated on-site, rather than referred to other doctors when necessary, which has led to high rates of strains and sprains. This is an issue that’s being reported now by OSHA. It’s unclear how long this problem has been going on, but it may lead to further problems down the line for employees.

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Zara Khan

Zara Khan is a seasoned investigative journalist with a focus on social justice issues. She has won numerous awards for her groundbreaking reporting and has a reputation for fearlessly exposing wrongdoing.

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