Workers Comp Zone


The turkey is gone, most people are back to work, and the workers’ comp world resumes.

Happy Cyber Monday.

Perhaps you struggled with crowds on Black Friday and threw a small bone to your local small businesses on Saturday.

But like millions of Americans, you may be hunting down “deals” on what is hyped as the internet’s biggest shopping day.

Workerscompzone has long wanted to know what it is like for workers in some of those online retailer fulfillment centers.

Leave it to the intrepid British tabloids to provide some answers.

The Daily Mirror has now published a series on an undercover investigation inside a London-area Amazon fulfillment warehouse (see link to the story at the end of this post).

The reporter doing the piece, Alan Selby, managed to sneak a video camera into the warehouse as he tried doing the job. Incidentally, it was a camera he purchased online through Amazon.

Selby notes that he is an athlete (a marathoner) but had trouble keeping up with the incredible physical and mental demands of picking merchandise off of the rotating racks. Meanwhile, every action is monitored and observed.

The warehouse uses a mix of human effort and robotics, but humans are being pushed to the point that they are in essence like robots.

Welcome to the current modern workplace and what may be a future model work environment for many Californians.

I don’t have any special knowledge of Amazon’s California fulfillment centers. But I won’t be surprised if they have similar systems.

As a veteran of the workers’ comp community, it is obvious to me that few of the judges, lawyers, claims examiners and policymakers have any concept of what really goes on in workplaces where claims arise.

Here is the Daily Mirror piece:

Stay tuned.