Dollar General Stores Cited for Emergency Exit Hazards

Dollar General Stores Cited for Emergency Exit Hazards

OSHA said these exits were locked or blocked at two locations.

Dollar General locations in Wisconsin and Ohio are being cited for locking emergency exits.

In Baldwin, Wisconsin, according to a press release, OSHA inspectors found emergency exits padlocked from the inside with a “bike lock and a board” at a Dollar General. These exits were also blocked by boxes, as found in the inspection in December 2021.

Store managers said that the doors “needed repairs to close properly,” though the investigation found the doors had needed repairs since September 2021, and that they were locked “while employees were present.”

In Seville, Ohio, OSHA inspectors found an emergency exit locked on the inside with barrel locks.

According to OSHA standard 1910.36, “Employees must be able to open an exit route door from the inside at all times without keys, tools, or special knowledge.”

OSHA cited the Wisconsin location for four willful violations and proposed penalties of $435,081. The Ohio location was cited for one willful violation. Proposed penalties total $145,027.

“OSHA cites Dollar General stores frequently for exposing workers to serious hazards, including the use of locks at exits, which can be catastrophic in an emergency,” explained OSHA Regional Administrator William Donovan in Chicago in the press release. “This company’s willingness to gamble with workers’ lives is disturbing and must stop before tragedy strikes.”

Photo credit: Jonathan Weiss /

About the Author

Alex Saurman is a former Content Editor for Occupational Health & Safety,who has since joined OH&S’s client services team. She continues to work closely with OH&S’s editorial team and contributes to the magazine.

Product Showcase

  • SlateSafety BAND V2

    SlateSafety BAND V2

    SlateSafety's BAND V2 is the most rugged, easy-to-use connected safety wearable to help keep your workforce safe and help prevent heat stress. Worn on the upper arm, this smart PPE device works in tandem with the SlateSafety V2 system and the optional BEACON V2 environmental monitor. It includes comprehensive, enterprise-grade software that provides configurable alert thresholds, real-time alerts, data, and insights into your safety program's performance all while ensuring your data is secure and protected. Try it free for 30 days. 3