Discounting Safety: Dollar Tree’s History of Ignoring Workplace Safety, Hazards Continues with $1.2 Million in Penalties at Two Family Dollar Stores in Ohio
One of the nation’s largest discount retailers continues to expose employees to the risk of injuries by flagrantly ignoring workplace safety regulations, this time with hazardous conditions found at two Ohio locations, in Maple Heights and Columbus.
Since 2017, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration and state OSHA programs have conducted more than 500 inspections at Family Dollar and Dollar Tree – operated by its parent company, Dollar Tree Inc. – and found more than 300 violations. During these inspections, OSHA routinely find exit routes, fire extinguishers and electrical panels dangerously obstructed or blocked; unsafe walking-working surfaces; and unstable stacks of merchandise.
Following the Ohio inspections, OSHA proposed penalties of $1,233,364 for multiple violations.
On January 31, OSHA initiated an inspection following an employee report of unsafe conditions at the Family Dollar store on Dunham Road in Maple Heights. The agency issued citations for one repeat violation and four willful violations, with proposed penalties of $685,777.
Two weeks later, OSHA opened an inspection on February 10, in response to an employee complaint of water leaking through the ceiling causing wet floors and ceiling tiles on the floor at the Lockbourne Road store in Columbus. As a result, the agency proposed $547,587 in penalties for one serious and one report violation, and four willful violations.
In both inspections, OSHA found hazards related to, obstructed egress, unstable stacks, inaccessible electrical equipment and fire extinguishers, as well as trip and fall hazards caused by water, carts, boxes, trash and merchandise spread throughout walking-working surfaces in the retail areas and storerooms.
The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with each of OSHA’s area directors, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
For more information, visit https://www.osha.gov.
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