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Inspections at Amazon Warehouses Uncover Serious Issues

January 22, 2023 | Personal Injury,Workers' Compensation,Workplace Safety

Inspections at Amazon Warehouses Uncover Serious IssuesWith over 1.6 million employees, Amazon is one of the largest employers in the United States. However, work conditions at Amazon often land the company in the news—and not for good reasons. Despite efforts to bolster their reputation through initiatives like the “thank my driver” program, which allows consumers to show their gratitude to Amazon delivery drivers, work conditions continue to dominate headlines.

In many cases, warehouse workers are the ones taking the brunt of Amazon’s intense work policies and unrealistic demands. This isn’t a big surprise; warehouse work is already more dangerous than employment in other industries, and when you add in Amazon’s high productivity demands, injuries are inevitable. If you’ve been hurt while working a warehouse job, you could be entitled to compensation. It’s time to talk to the team at Pisegna & Zimmerman. Still recovering? Don’t worry—we are Zoom-ready and handle all document signing via DocuSign, so you can handle your entire case from home. Call us at 818-888-8888 to schedule a consultation now.

 Inspections Across the Country Brought Issues to Light

 OSHA conducted inspections at numerous Amazon warehouse facilities in late 2022. They found documentation failures regarding workplace injuries and illnesses at six facilities, and Amazon was subsequently cited for 114 violations. The company reportedly did not report injuries and illnesses that should have been reported, misclassified injuries, waited too long to report injuries, and did not provide OSHA with required records.

This is obviously problematic for warehouse workers. Not only are they already at greater risk of injury, they also have to worry about their injuries not being reported or being covered up by their employers. By not reporting injuries or misclassifying them, employers like Amazon can attempt to avoid paying workers’ compensation, keep their injury numbers low, and avoid being cited for unsafe workplace practices. Of course, this is all at the expense of warehouse workers’ safety and livelihoods.

Financial Penalties Aren’t Enough

 As a result of the inspections, Amazon will likely have to pay just over $29,000 in penalties. This would be a large sum to any of the company’s thousands of injured warehouse workers, but to a company worth over $891 billion, $29,000 is a drop in the bucket. In companies this large, fines like those charged by OSHA are simply part of the budget. It is cheaper for them to budget for these fines and pay them when they arise than it is to have workplace policies and procedures that actually protect workers.

Penalties from federal agencies are not enough. Companies need to be held accountable by injured workers and feel significant financial losses in order to change their practices.

Warehouse Workers Pay the Price

 When profits are put above people, it’s the employees who pay the price. We’ve touched on this before—in a previous blog post, we reported on high warehouse injury rates. While the industrywide rates are already high, injury rates at Amazon are substantially higher than the industrywide average. In some Amazon warehouses, injury rates are nearly 50% higher than the national average for all warehouses.

When warehouse workers are pushed to meet unreachable quotas, skip necessary breaks, work long shifts without meals, and push their bodies past the limit, their companies are asking them to sacrifice their physical health for the company’s financial wellbeing. To add insult to injury, these same companies will go to great lengths to avoid paying out legitimate workers’ compensation claims.

How We Can Help

 If you’re an injured warehouse workers and you’ve been denied workers’ compensation benefits, it is time to talk to a workers’ compensation attorney. When companies are willing to put their workers at risk, it’s not surprising that they are also willing to fudge workers’ compensation reports to limit their financial losses.

Too many workers don’t know their rights. Don’t be one of them. If you have been encouraged to avoid filing a claim or your claim has been denied or delayed, stand up for yourself by talking to the team at Pisegna & Zimmerman. We’ll hold your employer accountable.

Contact Pisegna & Zimmerman Now

 When you’re ready to move forward with a workers’ compensation case, we’re ready to help you fight for what you deserve. Schedule your Zoom meeting with us now by calling 818-888-8888 or sending us a message online. You don’t have to face your company’s unethical tactics alone.