Dollar General faces penalties for Georgia store issues

NEW YORK (AP) — Dollar General faces nearly $1.3 million in penalties after government inspectors visited three of the chain’s stores in Georgia earlier this year and found worker-safety violations, federal regulators said Monday.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration said its inspectors found obstructed exit routes, boxes of merchandise stacked unsafely and electrical panels that were hard to access. It said those were “violations often cited at Dollar General locations.”

Since 2017, OSHA has proposed more than $6.5 million in penalties after 78 inspections at Dollar General locations nationwide, including more than $450,000 in penalties as a result of three inspections in Georgia.

The agency said its inspectors frequently find unsafe conditions that put workers at risk and that could lead to disaster for employees and customers in an emergency.

“Dollar General continues to demonstrate a willful pattern of ignoring hazardous working conditions and a disregard for the well-being of its employees,” said Doug Parker, OSHA’s assistant secretary of occupational safety and health. “Despite similar citations and sizable penalties in more than 70 inspections, the company refuses to change its business practices.”

In response, Dollar General said that following the Georgia inspections, it took immediate action to address issues and reiterated its safety expectations with store teams.

“The safety of our employees and customers is of paramount importance to us, and we will continue to work cooperatively with OSHA,” said the company based in Goodlettsville, Tennessee.

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