OSHA cites Pier 1 for Glendale store safety issues

Citations say storage areas lacked railings

Organizations:

Forth Worth, Texas-based Pier 1 Imports faces more than $100,000 in fines for workplace safety violations found at its Glendale store, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

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OSHA announced the fines, stemming from a November inspection at the 6010 N. Port Washington Road store. The fines include improperly using ladders, a lack of railings in stair and storage areas, blocking electrical panels and not having covers on electrical junction boxes.

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“Haphazardly stacked boxes can fall and injure workers, or block exit routes in an emergency,” said Christine Zortman, OSHA’s area director in Milwaukee. “Pier 1 must take responsibility to ensure the safety of its workers in all of its stores before someone is hurt or worse.”

A manager at the store referred questions to the company’s corporate offices. Spokesperson Jennifer Engstrand offered the following statement via email:

“The safety of Pier 1 Imports’ associates is of the utmost importance. We strive to ensure that our associates have a safe work environment. Pier 1 Imports is fully cooperating with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regarding the recent matter. We are not able to share any additional information at this time.

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According to the citations issued by OSHA:

  • Employees were using a 10-foot step ladder to reach storage areas, having to step horizontally on and off to reach the area.
  • Two loft areas had no fixed stairs to provide access for employees and did not have markings to indicate the floor load limit
  • Those loft areas, located almost 9 feet above the ground, had no railings.
  • The path to the back exit was blocked by boxes of merchandise.
  • Boxes were not stacked safely.
  • The electrical circuit breaker was blocked by a merchandise cart.
  • An electrical junction box in the Papasan/cushion loft area was missing a cover plate.

The company, which operates more than 1,000 stores, has 15 business days to request an informal conference to discuss the citations or contest them.

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