December 11, 2019
U.S. Department of Labor Cites UPS Inc. for Exposing Employees
To Fire, Other Hazards at Massachusetts Facility
BRAINTREE, MA – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited United Parcel Service Inc. for exposing employees to multiple hazards including exit access, fire and electrical at the shipping and delivery facility in Vineyard Haven, Massachusetts. The company faces $431,517 in penalties for four repeated and seven serious safety violations.
OSHA inspectors found several violations affecting employees’ ability to evacuate safely in the event of a fire or other emergency. The Agency cited the company for obstructed and inadequate exit routes, lack of proper exit signage, failure to update the facility’s emergency action plan, poor housekeeping, lack of stair rails and improper use of energized electrical cords.
“Employers must continually evaluate their facilities for hazards, and develop comprehensive safety and health programs to adequately protect workers,” said Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Loren Sweatt.
“The hazardous conditions at this UPS facility can impede a worker’s ability to promptly exit in an emergency, placing them at risk for serious or fatal injuries,” said OSHA Braintree Area Director James Mulligan. “Employers are required by law to provide workers with safe and healthful workplaces.”
Additional information is available in OSHA’s Emergency Exit Routes fact sheet, and Emergency Action Plans: How to Plan for Workplace Emergencies and Evacuations.
The company has contested the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA’s role is to help ensure these conditions for America’s working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.
The mission of the Department of Labor is to foster, promote, and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers, and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.
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Release Number: 19-1842-BOS
U.S. Department of Labor news materials are accessible at http://www.dol.gov. The Department’s Reasonable Accommodation Resource Center converts departmental information and documents into alternative formats, which include Braille and large print. For alternative format requests, please contact the Department at (202) 693-7828 (voice) or (800) 877-8339 (federal relay).