While there is undeniable convenience from the ease of purchase and rapid delivery options for many online retailers, it is easy to forget that people across the nation are often tasked with dangerous or stressful jobs to complete those orders in the necessary time-frame. For Massachusetts workers in these factories and warehouses, workplace accidents can happen in an instant and change their lives forever. Understanding the danger and taking precautions is, of course, necessary. Still, when accidents do occur, it is imperative to know what steps to take to receive workers’ compensation and other benefits.
Several reports state that Amazon places workers in jeopardy of injuries and even death due to its hard-charging culture. The need to meet strict deadlines is believed to have been a major factor in these accidents with serious injuries suffered by workers. The investigation stemmed from internal incidents as they were reported by the company. For its part, Amazon says that it maintains a safe culture at its fulfillment centers. The high rate of injuries, it says, are due to the number of workers it employs — an estimated 125,000 people at its centers.
Statistically, 23 of the fulfillment centers in the US had nearly 10 seriously injured workers for every 100 who worked full-time. On average, the industry has four. The managers record the injuries differently based on the severity and what kind of injury it was. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) form is for injuries that resulted in a fatality, workers missing days, losing consciousness, having broken bones, or needing medical treatment from a third party. Issues employees have complained about include inflammation, back strains, repetitive motion injuries, carpal tunnel and more.
Any job can leave employees prone to workplace accidents, but some situations are riskier than others. For those who are working in jobs where they are required to pack, sort, scan, carry and other physically exerting requirements, injuries can lead to lost wages, long-term injuries and even death. This can be exacerbated during the holiday season.