ATLANTA – Workplace safety inspections by the U.S. Department of Labor in Alabama and Florida have found three Dollar General locations exposing employees to fire hazards and other unsafe conditions.
In October 2022, inspectors with the department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration discovered spare shelving, rolling containers and merchandise blocking exit routes and creating fire and entrapment hazards at a Dollar General store in Addison, Alabama. OSHA also noted walkways blocked by merchandise and unsafely stacked items, which exposed workers to trip and struck-by hazards. A few weeks later, the agency’s inspectors visited a Haleyville store, about 35 miles away, in November 2022 and found similar violations.
In December 2022 in Astor, Florida, OSHA found Dollar General allowing merchandise and other items to block access to fire extinguishers and permitting employees to store materials improperly in the working space around an electrical panel, both violations often found at the company’s locations.
Following these inspections, OSHA issued citations to Dollar General Corp. for a total of eight repeat violations and proposed penalties of $1,098,292. Since 2017, the company has faced more than $21 million in fines after more than 240 inspections nationwide.
Between Feb. 1, 2022 and April 20, 2023 — in Alabama, Florida and Georgia alone — inspectors have assessed Dollar General nearly $9 million in proposed penalties after 28 investigations.
“In one workplace after another, our investigators continue to find the same hazards at Dollar General stores,” said OSHA Area Director Joel Batiz in Birmingham, Alabama. “The Dollar General Corporation needs to make changes to address the recurring violations before there is a tragedy.”
Based in Goodlettsville, Tennessee, Dollar General Corp. and Dolgencorp LLC operate about 19,000 stores and 28 distribution centers in 47 states and employ more than 173,000 workers. In fiscal year 2022, the company reported more than $9 billion in net sales.
Dollar General has contested the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
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