Manual labor of any kind is naturally more dangerous than other kinds of work. However, Amazon warehouse workers appear to be at greater than average risk.
In an explosive post from The Atlantic, the warehouse risks are detailed extensively. Two contributing factors are the robots used in production and the short Prime delivery times (as short as one day), which workers say have pushed production expectations to unreasonable levels.
Due to management and company expectations, it might seem frightening to report an injury. The Atlantic article also reports instances of management refusing to report or penalizing workers for injuries.
Despite this alleged workplace culture, reported injuries in 2018 came in at approximately twice the industry average: 9.6 serious injuries per 100 workers. The industry average is 4 out of 100.
What is Amazon’s position on the high number of injuries?
A spokesperson for the company says that the high number of reported injuries is due to overzealous reporting and a commitment to safety. Workers appear to disagree.
What should you do if you are injured in an Amazon facility?
Even if the prospect is scary, you have the right to report your injury and, potentially, be compensated for it. Workers’ compensation is for all citizens of the United States. At the end of the day, your health is what matters—and you have legal recourse to seek help with medical costs and possibly partial wages while you are out of work.
You can file a claim at the first medical visit associated with the injury by informing the doctor that the injury took place at work. The doctor can then verify that the injury is work-related, help you fill out a workers’ compensation form and form a plan for when you can safely return to work.