OSHA has proposed fines upwards of $365,500 on Walmart for twenty-four violations related to health and safety standards occurring at its Rochester New York supercenter location. In addition to the Rochester location, OSHA says they have also issued fines on other stores across the country.
A safety complaint was filed with OSHA’s Buffalo NY office. This led to the investigation which yielded the discovery of serious hazards in the workplace in the Rochester location that were also occurring in other stores in the nation. OSHA deemed the situation as unacceptable and called for Walmart to take ‘effective and proactive steps to assess, correct, and prevent the recurrence of hazards at all of its locations’ according to a press release issued by OSHA.
Investigations that led to the fines consisted of fall hazards, exit routes that were obstructed, and no lockout procedures for energy sources that permit employees to perform maintenance on a compacter at the Rochester store in a safe manner. Rochester was also cited for confined-space hazards and incomplete training programs that cover situations when workers are exposed to bodily fluids such as blood.
Walmart locations in other states have been cited for similar hazards between 2008 and 2010. The current allegations require Walmart to comply with OSHAs standards within 15 days.