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Indiana fines Amazon $7,000 following death of 20-year-old employee

An Amazon company logo marks the facade of a building, March 18, 2022, in Schoenefeld near Berlin. Amazon was fined $7,000 after a 20-year-old employee died while operating a mobile lift in an area with insufficient headroom at a facility in Fort Wayne, Indiana, in May 2023. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WISH) –The Indiana Department of Labor fined Amazon $7,000 following the death of an employee in May.

Inspection documents filed by IOSHA on Sept. 18 say on May 8, 20-year-old Caes David Gruesbeck died at the Amazon FW4 facility in Fort Wayne. The report says that Gruesbeck was operating a mobile lift while driving under an overhead conveyor.

There wasn’t enough headroom between the mobile lift and the conveyor, causing Gruesbeck to hit their head. His head then became stuck between the backrest of the lift and the conveyor. He was taken to a hospital where was pronounced deceased.

IOSHA fined Amazon $7,000 for the employee’s death, requiring the fines be paid within 15 days of the filing.

Alongside the fine, IOSHA required Amazon to fix the safety hazards by properly marking danger zones, prohibiting employees from standing on the lifts, and training workers to avoid areas with insufficient headroom when operating the lifts by Oct. 12.