Though Amazon boasts several claims that worker surveillance and automation keep the humans working the floor as safe as possible, safety goals are not always met. The rigorous record-keeping involved in this process only proves that.
In fact, recent data actually shows an uptick in injury incidents, especially during the busiest seasons such as the current holiday season.
Speed leads to injury
Reveal, a site run by the Center for Investigative Reporting discusses the rate of injury experienced by Amazon workers. The report states that automation has resulted in a drastic increase in the expectations for human workers, as well. Overseers expect workers to scan 100 items every hour, while robotic-assisted facilities must reach 400 items an hour.
Since robots increase the speed at which work occurs, it is natural that humans will have to speed up to keep pace, too. Unfortunately, though, humans cannot increase their speed without also increasing the likelihood of accidents and injuries occurring.
Ergonomic issues workers face
Amazon workers also face an excessive amount of ergonomic issues, such as repeated exertions, repetitive stress due to bending at the waist and standing for shifts of up to 10 hours 4 days a week during overtime.
Though Amazon spent $1 billion in safety measures recently, weekly injury numbers show that workers are still facing a lot of risks. Workers at robot-assisted facilities during busy times of the year are particularly susceptible to injury.
Unfortunately, the rushed pace at which workers must go does not seem to be letting up any time soon. Injured workers have the option of seeking compensation if needed for the injuries they face while dealing with these circumstances.