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Press Release

Amazon Cited By OSHA Based On SDNY Referrals For Serious Violations That Exposed Workers To Safety Hazards

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of New York

Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and Douglas L. Parker, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health, announced that earlier today the United States Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) issued citations for three facilities to AMAZON.COM SERVICE LLC (“AMAZON”) arising out of referrals received from the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York (the “Office”). 

These citations are for serious violations of Section 5(a)(1) of the Occupational Safety and Health Act (“OSH Act”) for AMAZON’s failure to furnish a place of employment which was free from recognized hazards that were causing or likely to cause death or serious physical harm to employees.  Specifically, the citations explained that employees at three AMAZON facilities were exposed to ergonomic hazards which put them at high risk for lower back injuries and other musculoskeletal disorders (“MSDs”).  These hazards resulted from the high frequency with which workers are required to lift packages and other items; the heavy weight of the items; awkward postures, such as twisting, bending, and long reaches while lifting; and long hours required to complete assigned tasks.  These facilities are located in New Windsor, New York, Waukegan, Illinois, and Deltona, Florida. Additionally, at the Deltona, Florida, warehouse, OSHA also cited AMAZON for exposing workers to the hazard of being struck by falling boxes with merchandise. 

U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said: “Amazon became the nation’s largest online retailer thanks, in no small part, to the hundreds of thousands of Americans who work each year in Amazon’s massive warehouses.  Each of these workers has the right to a place of work free from severe safety hazards.  These citations are a step toward protecting the hard-working people at Amazon’s warehouses who have been laboring under hazardous conditions.  OSHA’s investigation regarding workplace safety hazards at Amazon warehouses continues.  And our Office is investigating possible fraudulent conduct designed to hide injuries from OSHA and others.  We ask that anyone who has information relevant to this investigation contact the U.S. Attorney’s Office.” 

OSHA Assistant Secretary of Labor Douglas L. Parker said: “Each of these inspections found work processes that were designed for speed but not safety, and they resulted in serious worker injuries.  While Amazon has developed impressive systems to make sure its customers’ orders are shipped efficiently and quickly, the company has failed to show the same level of commitment to protecting the safety and well-being of its workers.  Our hope is that the findings of our investigations inspire Amazon and other warehouses to make the safety and health of their workers a core value.”

These citations arise out of workplace safety inspections at six AMAZON warehouses across the country that OSHA conducted beginning in mid-July and early August of last year in response to referrals received from the Office.  OSHA’s investigation at three of AMAZON’s facilities — located outside of Albany, New York, Boise, Idaho, and Denver, Colorado — is ongoing.  Per the OSH Act, OSHA has six months from a violation to issue citations.  In mid-December, OSHA issued citations for AMAZON’s failure to appropriately log injuries for reporting to OSHA at all six facilities. 

The Civil Division of the Office is also investigating worker safety hazards at AMAZON warehouses across the country, as well as whether AMAZON engaged in a fraudulent scheme designed to hide the true number of injuries to AMAZON workers and whether AMAZON made false representations to lenders about those injuries and its safety record to obtain credit.

Members of the public can report workplace safety and injury-related issues at AMAZON warehouses to this Office.  Anyone who has information about safety issues — including safety issues related to the pace of work — or a failure to report injuries, or inadequate medical care at AMAZON’s onsite first-aid center or at a clinic recommended by AMAZON can share that information with this Office via the following link:

The matter is being handled by the Office’s Civil Division.  Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jacob Lillywhite, Dominika Tarczynska, Elizabeth J. Kim, and Adam Gitlin are in charge of the investigation.


Nicholas Biase (212) 637-2600

Updated July 20, 2023

Environmental Justice
Labor & Employment
Press Release Number: 23-013