The main reason that people nominated and voted for SeaWorld in our recently concluded Worst Company In America tournament was the controversy — highlighted in the documentary Blackfish — over its treatment of orca whales and, more precisely, the multiple deaths that have been tied to one particular whale. SeaWorld has been fighting workplace safety citations issued following the 2010 death of a trainer, but today a federal appeals court ruled against the park. [More]
We mentioned the other day that it’s been five years since the tragic Black Friday trampling death of a Walmart employee. In the years since, Walmart has spent millions of dollars trying to avoid the meager $7,000 fine from OSHA, and still has yet to pay it. [More]
In the early morning hours of Nov. 28, 2008, a Walmart employee in Long Island was trampled to death by over-eager shoppers rushing to grab doorbuster deals. In the years since, many stores have taken measures to prevent this sort of tragedy from happening again, but it doesn’t hurt to remind retailers what can be done to minimize any mob mania. [More]
Walmart says it will ramp up safety conditions at more than 2,800 of its stores scattered across the United States, after inspectors say they found “repeat” and serious” health and safety violations at one store under investigation. The mega chain has also agreed to pay a $190,000 fine under the terms of a deal with the Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), because of “unacceptable” safety hazards facing employees a that store. [More]
Although sitting and staring a monitor all day for work doesn’t seem to be strenuous, the monotony of an office job can break you down physically. Proper form and equipment can keep desk jockeying from wearing on you. [More]
When most of us make a purchase from Amazon.com or some other e-tailer, we rarely give much thought to the folks behind the scenes responsible for fulfilling your order at the warehouse. But several employees at an Amazon warehouse in Pennsylvania are trying to make people aware of the humans behind all those cardboard boxes after a summer of working through stifling heat. [More]
Talk about sticking to your principles. Rather than simply pay a $7,000 fine stemming from the Black Friday trampling death of a store employee, Walmart has racked up at least $2 million in legal costs to prove their point. [More]
The odds aren’t in her favor—in recent years, only 16% of employees who filed complaints with the Labor Dept.’s Occupational Safety & Health Administration won—but OSHA has agreed to open an investigation into Chalace Lowry’s claims that after she reported suspicious activities at her Wal-Mart headquarters job as she’d been trained to do, she was outed to her boss as the whistleblower, and when she asked to be moved to a new position she was told to look for one herself and that Wal-Mart would make no guarantees about her job security.
The House of Representatives passed a bill today that would require OSHA to limit workers’ exposure to diacetyl, the recently popularized butter-flavored chemical used in microwave popcorn and the suspected source of dreaded “popcorn lung.” The White House has threatened to veto any regulation sent its way, and some House Republicans agree. Said Representative Joe Wilson of South Carolina, “Fundamentally, the science does not exist to state the link between diacetyl and impaired lung function.” [Reuters]
American Airlines was fined $231,000 back in June for unsafe work conditions at Chicago’s O’Hare airport. The conditions included fall hazards, electrical and fire hazards, hygiene issues, blocked exits and storage of oxygen and acetylene cylinders.