When Amazon opened its first New York City warehouse in September 2018, it was hailed as a major economic boost. With over 350,000 full-time employees across the globe and a lot more working part-time or seasonally, Amazon is a leading and high-profile employer.
For those who work in a warehouse, a typical day involves a lot of inventory management tasks, such as:
- Labeling orders
- Unpacking incoming shipments
- Fulfilling orders
- Processing returns
- Loading trucks
Unfortunately, various Amazon locations have been cited by OSHA for exposing employees to risk factors such as repetitive strain injuries and bodily stresses due to prolonged standing and continuous bending. Last November, Gizmodo reported that the above-mentioned New York warehouse has an alarmingly high injury rate: three times the industry average.
What are the most common types of Amazon warehouse injuries?
When you work in a warehouse, there can be a lot of prolonged physical labor involved. Over time, they can lead to injuries that include:
- Overexertion: These injuries happen when you put too much stress on your body and are commonly caused by heavy lifting. Warehouses that are understaffed or have failed to train employees on heavy lifting procedures often witness overexertion incidents.
- Repetitive strain: These injuries, which include carpal tunnel syndrome and persistent pain in the hands and forearms, are caused by continuous and repetitive activity.
Other warehouse injuries that don’t involve physical exertion include:
- Slip and fall: Warehouses can be so busy, especially during the holiday season, that spills or melted snow aren’t cleaned up immediately. The result is a slip and fall incident, which can cause serious injury, especially on a concrete floor.
- Hit by falling objects: When inexperienced or rushed workers stack boxes and other objects incorrectly, the pile can topple over and hurt someone.
- Truck and forklift accidents: Warehouse vehicles can cause severe injuries in a crowded and hectic warehouse environment. Untrained operators and machine malfunction can also contribute to injury and even death.
If you are injured in an Amazon warehouse, then you should be able to file a workers’ compensation claim to cover medical bills and a portion of any lost wages. In some cases, however, a personal injury claim may be appropriate. If a piece of defective equipment hurts you, then you may be able to sue the manufacturer for compensation. If a third party such as a vendor or delivery service acts in a negligent or reckless manner and causes you to be injured, then you may also be able to file a claim against them.
Any serious Amazon warehouse injury should be reviewed with a New York personal injury attorney. When someone else’s misconduct causes you pain and impacts your livelihood, the right legal representation can get you the compensation you need. Jayson Lutzky is a Bronx, New York accident and personal injury lawyer with over 36 years of legal experience. Mr. Lutzky offers free in-person initial consultations. Call 718-329-9500 to set up an appointment.