Washington Motel 6 fined heavily for unsafe work

Employees exposed to hypodermic needles with no training, state's L&I department finds

A Motel 6 in Vancouver, Wash. received more than $100,000 in fines for creating an unsafe working environment. (KOIN 6)
A Motel 6 in Vancouver, Wash. received more than $100,000 in fines for creating an unsafe working environment. (KOIN 6)

VANCOUVER, Wash. (KOIN 6) — The Washington State Department of Labor & Industries has leveed more than $112,000 fines against the Motel 6 on NE Chkalov Drive after finding them in violation of several potential workplace safety matters.

The state found that the Motel 6 was exposing its employees to used hypodermic needles while cleaning rooms, according to documents obtained by KOIN 6 News. The motel also had a lack of training on how to use chemical cleaners.

“Motel 6 employees are exposed to blood borne pathogens via blood, bodily fluids, and other potentially infectious material,” according to L&I.

The state inspection also found that several employees had not been offered the hepatitis B vaccination. Since the inspection and investigation, the motel corrected the violation, but was still fined, L&I said.

The state also fined the motel $27,500 because it did not handle regulated waste safely. The motel, the state said, did not have safe containers for disposal of needles. New protocols are now in place, according to the state.

State officials also learned that the motel had not informed employees of how to properly handle hazardous chemicals in the workplace. Corrections have been made, the state said.

KOIN 6 News has learned this isn’t the first time the motel has come under review by the state. It had previously been inspected and cited for serious violations for in 2011 and 2012.

Speaking by phone Tuesday, Rocky Patel, vice president of H&R Management Inc., said he would be filing an appeal. Elaine Fischer, a spokeswoman with L&I, told KOIN 6 News that as of Tuesday, the appeal had not been filed. They have 15 days to do so.

The motel was fined for a total of nine violations. Six of the violations have been corrected. Three of them have a correction due date of Feb. 8, 2015.

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