US regulators investigate death of Amazon worker in New Jersey: Details

Federal occupational safety investigators are looking into the death of an Amazon worker and a potentially fatal injury to another, adding to an investigation already underway after a third death during the company’s annual Prime Day shopping event in mid-July. All three Amazon workers have died in the past month and are employed at the company’s New Jersey facilities.

New investigations by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) are under scrutiny Amazon’s injury rates and safety procedures in the workplace, which have long been criticized by safety and labor advocates as inadequate.

Labor Department spokeswoman Denisha Braxton on Thursday confirmed that the most recent death took place last week at an Amazon facility in Monroe Township, about 20 miles (35 km) northeast of Trenton. The second probe is looking at a July 24 crash at an Amazon facility in Robbinsville. The worker involved in that crash died three days later, according to Braxton.

In a statement, Robbinsville Police Chief Michael Polaski said police responded to the warehouse, known as PNE5, on July 24 after receiving reports that a worker had fallen from a three-foot ladder. (one meter) and hit his head on the head.

Polaski said workers were alert and alert when police arrived. But police were told that CPR had been carried out by other workers before they arrived, he said. The person was taken to the hospital and OSHA was informed of the incident on the same day, he added.

Police in the town of Monroe did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the incident there.

The two most recent deaths were first reported by USA Today Network.

OSHA officials declined to provide additional information on any of the deaths, citing open investigations. The agency has up to six months to complete each survey.

Sam Stephenson, a spokesman for Seattle-based Amazon, said in a statement that the company is “deeply saddened by the loss of colleagues and offers our condolences to their family and friends.” “.

“Our investigations are ongoing and we are partnering with OSHA, which is conducting its own assessment of events, as often happens in these situations,” Stephenson said. speak.

Last month, OSHA opened another investigation into the death of a worker at an Amazon warehouse in the New Jersey town of Carteret during the company’s Prime Day shopping event, the largest in its history. company history. Federal officials have not released additional details about the death, but news reports have identified the worker as 42-year-old Rafael Reynaldo Mota Frias.

An Amazon spokesperson said the company’s internal investigation into Carteret’s death found it “was not a work-related incident, rather it was related to a personal health condition.” “

“OSHA is currently investigating the incident, and based on the evidence available to us, we fully expect that it will reach the same conclusion,” the spokesperson said.

The news of the deaths comes as the company’s activities come under wider scrutiny. In late July, OSHA officials inspected Amazon facilities in New York, Illinois, and Florida after receiving referrals alleging health and safety violations from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District. South of New York. The U.S. attorney’s office’s civil division is also investigating safety hazards at Amazon warehouses and “fraud designed to conceal injury from OSHA and others,” according to a spokesman for the office.

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