Dollar General Slammed for Dangerous Conditions in Stores: “Low-Cost, Higher Risk”

Inflation might have slowed, however at a time when costs are nonetheless on the upper facet, Greenback Basic continues attracting prospects with its on a regular basis reductions and already low costs. However these financial savings may not be sufficient to maintain consumers coming again. Greenback Basic has confronted substantial criticism in latest months, incomes backlash for overcharging consumers and leaving shops understaffed. Now, the low cost retailer is being slammed for one thing else: harmful retailer situations. Learn on to seek out out why officers are as soon as once more elevating main considerations about ongoing questions of safety at Greenback Basic.

READ THIS NEXT: Communities Are Preventing Again In opposition to Greenback Basic and Greenback Tree—Here is Why.

The front store sign of a Dollar General in the morning light.

The U.S. Division of Labor’s Occupational Security and Well being Administration (OSHA) just lately carried out inspections in 4 totally different Greenback Basic shops in Florida and Georgia, in line with a March 13 press launch. From Aug. to Sept. 2022, officers opened inspections at two of the retailer’s shops in Ocala, Florida, and one other two in Columbus, Georgia.

Quite a few “unsafe situations” have been found at these places, prompting OSHA to difficulty fines in opposition to Greenback Basic. Consequently, the corporate is going through a complete of $710,974 in proposed penalties for 5 repeat violations in Ocala, and a complete of $319,220 in proposed penalties for 3 repeat violations in Columbus.

In an announcement to Finest Life, a spokesperson for Greenback Basic mentioned, “As a rising retailer serving hundreds of communities throughout the nation, Greenback Basic is dedicated to offering a protected work atmosphere for its associates and buying expertise for its prospects. We recurrently evaluation and refine our security packages, and reinforce them by means of coaching, ongoing communication, recognition and accountability. After we study of conditions the place we’ve got didn’t reside as much as this dedication, we work to well timed tackle the difficulty and be sure that the corporate’s expectations relating to security are clearly communicated, understood and carried out.”

Close-up action of safety supervisor's hand which is weared an impact glove is holding a clipboard, and use the another hand writing something on paper during safety audit. Selective focus at glove.

The investigations at Greenback Basic shops in Georgia and Florida uncovered a number of violations from the corporate.

One retailer in Ocala on Marion Oaks Manor was cited for 2 repeat violations that OSHA categorizes as “critical.” This included the shop’s emergency exits being blocked by rubbish baggage and rolltainers, in addition to transportable fireplace extinguishers not being simply accessible if wanted.

The opposite Greenback Basic in Ocala—situated on 58th Avenue—was cited for 3 critical violations. Just like the Marion Oaks Manor retailer, this location additionally had blocked emergency exits and never simply accessible fireplace extinguishers. However the 58th Ave retailer was additionally cited attributable to the truth that staff weren’t in a position to open one of many constructing’s exit doorways from the within and not using a key.

Over in Columbus, a Greenback Basic on Victory Drive was penalized for 2 critical violations. This location additionally prevented staff from opening an exit door from the within and not using a key, but it surely additionally didn’t “guarantee efficient safety in opposition to struck-by hazards” attributable to merchandise being stacked to unstable heights.

The opposite Greenback Basic in Columbia—situated on thirteenth Avenue—was fined for only one critical violation, nonetheless. “The employer didn’t be sure that all locations of employment, passageways, storerooms, service rooms, and walking-working surfaces are saved in a clear, orderly, and sanitary situation,” OSHA wrote in its report for this retailer.

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customers walking out of dollar general
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OSHA mentioned that whereas Greenback Basic portrays its chain as “America’s neighborhood normal retailer,” its disregard over harmful retailer situations tells a special story. As one of many nation’s largest low cost retailers, the corporate demonstrates “low-cost, larger danger,” in line with the federal government company.

From Feb. 1, 2022 by means of Jan. 31, 2023, OSHA mentioned it has issued citations in 23 totally different Greenback Basic retailer inspections throughout Alabama, Florida, and Georgia. This alone has resulted in a complete of almost $7.5 million penalties for the corporate.

“Exposing staff and others to those hazards might be harmful, particularly in an emergency,” Kurt Petermeyer, OSHA’s regional administrator in Atlanta, mentioned in an announcement. “Greenback Basic is effectively conscious of federal necessities, however they proceed to disregard their authorized tasks to guard their staff at shops all through the nation.”

dollar general store
Retail Photographer / Shutterstock

It isn’t simply these places both. In Ocala and Columbus, inspectors “catalogued lots of the similar violations Greenback Basic has refused to right at its shops all through the nation,” in line with the brand new press launch.

Since 2017, OSHA has fined the corporate over $15 million in additional than 180 inspections nationwide “for quite a few willful, repeat and critical office security violations associated to unsafe situations.”

Greenback Basic has even needed to shut down a few of its shops due to these points. As Insider reported in Feb. 2023, numerous native officers throughout the U.S. have pressured the short-term closure of a number of totally different places in latest months attributable to overcrowded merchandise creating fireplace hazards.

Two Greenback Basic shops have been ordered to shut in Pittsylvania County, Virginia, after inspections discovered that aisles have been so cluttered that there was lower than 36 inches of area for patrons and staff to maneuver by means of—the minimal required by legislation, Christopher Key, public security director for Pittsylvania County, informed Insider.

With regard to shops being closed for unsafe situations, a spokesperson for Greenback Basic beforehand informed Finest Life that the corporate is “dedicated to offering a protected work atmosphere for its associates and buying expertise for its prospects.”

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