At more than 100 Amazon fulfillment centers across the United States, workers are closely monitored down to the second on how long it takes them to do their job – from loading bins with products to packing boxes and sealing packages so they land “smile side up” at the customer’s door.
But workers say this intense focus on speed has led to serious injuries that put them out of work for weeks at a time. Amazon closely guards its safety logs and won’t share these numbers with journalists or the public. But through a federal regulatory requirement, reporter Will Evans was able to obtain injury logs from more than 20 fulfillment centers across the U.S. and delve into the company’s opaque safety record.
Evans found that the serious injury rate at these warehouses is more than double the industry average. At some centers, it is four to six times the average. In the first of a two-part series with PBS NewsHour, Reveal takes a first-ever look at safety records maintained by the nearly trillion-dollar company.