Target Corporation, the 8th largest retailer in the United States, has agreed to correct exit access and storage hazards at 200 stores to improve worker safety as part of a settlement with the U.S. Department of Labor.
During the time of May and December 2019, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued citations to eight Target stores in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New York for violations including blocked or obstructed emergency exits and fire exit routes and unsafe storage of materials in backrooms.
Target will pay $464,750 in penalties and confirm to abate exit path and storage safety issues at all Target stores in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York for the next two years. The settlement is predicted to be finalized in November.
Target will also ensure to build on its existing safety programs by authorizing store managers to delay delivery of inventory if needed to ensure safe egress conditions, assist within the acquisition of additional storage capacity if needed, conduct surveillance monitoring of egress conditions at high-risk stores, retrain all affected employees on egress issues, have outside managers monitor egress conditions at each store in a minimum of two times a year and annually hire a third party to conduct an audit of egress safety at each store.
A Target spokeswoman said in an email that the retailer was already working to address the safety concerns before OSHA reached out in 2018. She stated that “we will continue to invest in the technology, tools, and processes that keep our stores safe and are glad we could work with OSHA to resolve this issue”.