Amazon Trial on Warehouse Worker Safety Has Begun in Washington

Amazon Trial on Warehouse Worker Safety Has Begun in Washington

The trial follows two years of investigation by state OSHA officials.

A trial involving Amazon and the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) began on Monday, July 24.

Amazon faces allegations it presents its warehouse workers with a hazardous work environment, which has resulted in injury due to repetitive motions. The company’s anticipated pace of work and other alleged hazards were an early focus of the trial. Experts in workplace safety, ergonomics and occupational medicine were in line to testify to that effect.

Responding to complaints from workers in Amazon warehouses, Washington OSHA officials launched an investigation into the company in 2020, resulting in citations in 2021 and 2022 for workload hazards. Amazon appealed these citations, claiming it had taken efforts to remediate potential worker injury. Now the company wants these citations dismissed.

“We look forward to showing that L&I’s allegations are inaccurate and don’t reflect the reality of safety at Amazon,” said Maureen Lynch Vogel, spokesperson for Amazon, said in a statement. “The truth is that we’re always investing in safety and our efforts are working, with recordable injury rates at our sites in Kent and DuPont improving by 16 percent and 40 percent since 2018. We’re proud of our progress and we’ll continue working to get better every day.”

For its part, L&I proposes Amazon makes necessary changes to ensure the health and safety of its workers. Suggested improvements, according to The Seattle Times, included the introduction of new equipment and updated scheduling allowing ample breaks for workers with physically intensive roles at the company’s warehouses.

The trial is expected to continue for roughly six weeks.

About the Author

Robert Yaniz Jr. is the Content Editor of Occupational Health & Safety.

Product Showcase

  • The MGC Simple Plus

    The MGC Simple Plus

    The MGC Simple Plus is a simple-to-use, portable multi-gas detector that runs continuously for three years without needing to be recharged or routinely calibrated after its initial charge and calibration during manufacturing. The detector reliably tests a worksite’s atmosphere for hydrogen sulfide, carbon monoxide, oxygen and combustible gases (LEL). Additionally, it is durable enough to withstand the harshest treatment and environments, which is why it has an IP 68 rating. The MGC Simple Plus is also compatible with a variety of accessories, such as Gas Clip Technologies’ new GCT External Pump. Visit for more information. 3

  • Magellan X Pte Ltd

    Hesitate No More with SOL-X Connected Worker Health & Safety Solution

    According to the National Safety Council, work-related medically consulted injuries total 4.26 million in 2021 in USA alone. SOL-X solution prevents “human factors” safety issues by anticipating incidents and improving compliance workflows. Leverages digital technologies (IIoT, AI and analytics) to predict patterns from occurring and make informed decisions. Control Of Work - gets rid of tedious paperwork and experience digital workflows. Crew Protect - maximises safety and situational awareness with health trackers and situational indicators. Award-winning Intrinsically Safe SmartWatch – innovative features that enable near real-time visibility and connected well-being. Works well with major connectivity protocols like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Long-Range Bluetooth! 3