When Your Boss Wants You To Stack Products Higher Than They Should Go, And You Are Hurt

Posted on: 1 December 2019


'Tis the season to work retail. Stores hire seasonal help at higher wages to get the right amount of people in to work the maddening holiday sales. However, a very big problem that occurs this time of year is the overstock of goods. Stores are required to stack products far above consumers' heads with the intent of showing that there is plenty of everything and to keep rotating products down to the shelves on the floor. Trucks with more products come to the stores daily, instead of a couple times a week, and soon there is no place to put all of it. On occasion, shift supervisors will ask employees to stack things much higher than is wise or safe, and that is usually when people are injured. 

If you were asked to stack products on top of store shelves several feet into the air, and then you were injured when lots of products fell on you, you might have a good argument for worker's compensation. Quite often, this practice of stacking things too high is actually illegal and against OSHA standards for employee safety. When employees are injured because of this, employees are entitled to worker's comp. If worker's comp is denied, then an employee should seek legal help. 

The Extent of Your Injuries

A worker's comp attorney can assess your situation to see if your case warrants a lawsuit. The extent of your injuries when boxes of products fell on you will dictate whether or not you need to pursue this further. For example, if heavy items fell on you and lacerated your scalp such that you needed to go to the emergency room at the local hospital and have your scalp stitched up, then you should sue. If a couple of lighter items fell on you and bruised your arms, but you did not need any medical treatment, worker's comp is not in the cards for you. If you still fee that something should be done, file a report at work, talk to the store manager, and then if you feel that your complaint has not been heard, file a report with OSHA. Include pictures of how high things are being stacked. 

Pallets Falling on You

The most severe of all scenarios is when a pallet full of products falls on you. Pallets should never be stacked too high on any level in the store. The crushing weight of a full warehouse pallet often results in a lot of broken bones and time off of work. This is definitely a case where worker's comp should be awarded, and if it is not, you should sue. 

For more information, contact companies like Oxner + Permar, PLLC.