Amazon cited $60K for hazardous work conditions at Kent facility

The US giant Amazon logo is pictured on the opening day of a new distribution center in Augny, near Metz, eastern France, on September 23, 2021. (Photo by SEBASTIEN BOZON / AFP) (Photo by SEBASTIEN BOZON/AFP via Getty Images)

Amazon faces $60,000 in fines for dangerous work conditions at its fulfillment center in Kent, according to the Washington Department of Labor & Industries.

L&I says an inspection of their Kent facility found that 10 out of 12 production processes "create a serious hazard for work-related back, shoulder, wrist and knee injuries." The department says many jobs at the fulfillment center involves repetitive motions like lifting, carrying and twisting, and workers are required to do these things quickly and repeatedly, increasing risk of injury.

The Bellevue-based e-commerce giant has 60 days to develop a written plan, detailing a strategy to fix the safety issues.

According to L&I, they provided recommendations for Amazon, including height-adjustable platforms, using powered equipment to move pallets and setting safe work paces.

Amazon has been in hot water for labor concerns for some time—L&I notes they have cited the company for similar violations at three Washington locations, and the company has neglected to implement changes to improve workplace safety.

Because of this, L&I says this most recent violation is classified as a "willful violation," which comes with a higher penalty than previous ones.

Fines paid from these citations go into the workers' compensation supplemental pension fund.

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