Amazon Cited for Workplace Injuries, Hazards in New Jersey
The workplace should be a safe environment, but unfortunately, that is not always the case. Workplace hazards are common, and employees are getting injured everywhere. Warehouse work is especially dangerous, with so much equipment involved.
Amazon is known as the world’s largest retailer, but it’s also known for hazardous work conditions. An Amazon warehouse in Logan Township has received citations for ergonomic hazards after it required employees to perform tasks leading to bodily stress and musculoskeletal disorders. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently cited Amazon for ergonomic hazards. The agency proposed $15,625 in penalties and issued Amazon a Hazard Alert Letter.
Ergonomics refers to the study of a person’s efficiency in the working environment. It essentially means fitting a job to a person and helps lessen muscle fatigue while increasing productivity. Ergonomics is also helpful for reducing the risk of musculoskeletal disorders.
While there is no federal ergonomics standard, OSHA cites employers for ergonomics hazards using its authority under the General Duty Clause (§5(a)(1)) of the Occupational Safety and Health Act. While investigating the Logan Township warehouse, OSHA learned that Amazon failed to ensure injured employees received proper medical care for their workplace injuries. This is when the agency issued a second Hazard Alert Letter to Amazon for its negligence.
The New Jersey Amazon facility is not the only deficient location. Earlier this year, OSHA found similar concerns about Amazon facilities in Florida and New York. This is the sixth time this year in which OSHA has cited Amazon for violations at its warehouses. Besides the Florida and New York location, OSHA has also issued citations to warehouses in Colorado, Idaho, Illinois, New York, and Bayonne, New Jersey.
According to an OSHA spokesperson, the work done by Amazon employees in the company’s fulfillment centers is physically demanding. This means that proper medical care should be available for employees in a prompt manner. Amazon needs to do more to protect the health and safety of its employees. A good start would be to address preventable hazards.
The Department of Labor has 18 open federal inspections at Amazon warehouses throughout the United States. OSHA is getting stricter with certain employment facilities. On July 13, the agency launched a National Emphasis Program (NEP), focused on warehouses, distribution centers, postal processing facilities, and high-risk retail establishments. The NEP is focused on ergonomics and heat hazards, as well as industrial vehicle operations, material handling and storage, fire protection, and walking and working surfaces.
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Any workplace can be the site of hazards and accidents. Employers need to do their due diligence in preventing these injuries
A Morristown work-related accident attorney from The Law Offices of Michael P. Burakoff can help you if you have been injured in the workplace. Get the legal advice you need from our experienced team. To schedule a free consultation, fill out the online form or call (973) 455-1567.