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California Cites Warehouse Owner, Staffing Firm

January 19 2012

California issued $256,445 in citations to a warehouse owner and a staffing firm for unsafe working conditions, the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health reported Wednesday.

The firms receiving the citations were National Distribution Centers and Tri State Staffing, according to Cal/OSHA. The citations cover more than 60 violations at four warehouses in San Bernardino County, Calif., an area in the southern part of the state with a high concentration of warehouses. Violations included lack of fall protection from high-rise pickers, unstable storage stacking and unguarded machinery.

The state agency found both the warehouse firm and the staffing firm were liable.

“When employers use a contractor for their staffing needs, they are not released from their responsibilities to provide a safe workplace,” said Cal/OSHA Chief Ellen Widess. “As dual employers sharing responsibility for training and worker safety, both National Distribution Centers and Tri Sate Staffing were responsible for ensuring that all employees are protected on the job.”

The warehouse inspections occurred after a worker’s heat illness injury in August 2011 as well as complaints from Warehouse Workers United.

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