PROVIDENCE, RI – For the third time in three months, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited one of the nation’s largest discount retail chains, Dollar Tree Inc. for allowing hazardous conditions at one of its Rhode Island stores, this one in Coventry.
Responding to a complaint, OSHA opened an inspection at the 760 Tiogue Ave. Dollar Tree store in January 2023. Inspectors found store employees exposed to slip and trip hazards created by haphazardly stacked boxes falling and spilling items in the store’s shopping area and wheeled carts, large boxes, bins and trash spread throughout the stockroom. They also discovered boxes of merchandise stacked unsafely in the stockroom, exposing employees to collapse and struck-by hazards.
These conditions led OSHA to cite Dollar Tree for two repeat violations with $294,668 in proposed penalties. Federal workplace safety inspectors have cited the company previously for allowing similar hazards at stores in Providence, and in Idaho, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Texas. View the Coventry citations.
“We have cited Rhode Island Dollar Tree locations before for unsafely stored stock and materials, so they are well aware of these hazards and how to fix them,” said OSHA Area Director Robert Sestito in Providence, Rhode Island. “It’s time they put worker safety over profits.”
Since 2017, federal and state OSHA programs identified more than 300 violations in more than 500 inspections at Dollar Tree and Family Dollar stores operated by Dollar Tree Inc., based in Chesapeake, Virginia. In April 2023, the agency cited the company’s locations in East Providence and Pawtucket for obstructing exits and unsafely stacking materials, for which Dollar Tree has paid $539,095 in penalties.
Dollar Tree Inc. operates more than 16,000 Dollar Tree and Family Dollar locations in 48 states and five Canadian provinces. The company also has a nationwide logistics network and has more than 193,000 employees. The publicly traded company reported a gross profit of $7.7 billion in 2021.
The company has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
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