Last year, I wrote two articles about the unsafe conditions at Dollar General stores. You can read them here:
I could have written several more articles into 2023. The Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) has continued to find unsafe conditions at Dollar General stores, including stores in Alabama.
In my prior articles I mentioned representing several past Dollar General employees after serious workplace injuries. In each case, I felt the work-related accidents could have easily been prevented by the company — If the company had taken actions to keep its stores clean and adequately staffed.
While my articles have largely discussed worker safety, these store conditions also put customers and vendors at huge risks of personal injury. Recently, an Alabama jury found Dollar General negligent for a personal injury suffered by an outside delivery driver.
What happened to the delivery driver? The driver was delivering merchandise to an Alabama Dollar General store. The driver was operating a half-ton rolling cart full of bottled water on a delivery ramp. However, due to a deteriorated surface, the ramp gave way, causing the driver to fall. He suffered serious personal injuries, including a torn rotator cuff in his shoulder and other fractures. He required two surgeries. The news article doesn’t tell us the impact on the delivery driver long-term. However, a shoulder injury can be devastating and leave a worker with long-term impairments that impact his or her ability to continue working. Nobody expects to suffer a disabling injury due to a defective ramp.
Many delivery jobs involve frequent heavy lifting, pushing and pulling. I’ve represented numerous drivers at local bottling plants who were injured because of the fast-paced and heavy work. It’s a tough job. Although the job duties are tough, the driver should be able to count on a safe place to unload his merchandise. The retailers on his route owe a duty to provide a safe store for deliveries. Is there really any excuse for a loading / unloading area to be rotten or deteriorated to the point it puts people at risk?