McDonald’s Peru franchisee fined $250,000 over death of workers

McDonald’s Peru franchisee, Arcos Dorados, was on Thursday fined $250,000 for negligence of safety norms that led to the death of two employees while at work this month.

Alexandra Porras, 19, and GabrielCampos, 18, were electrocuted on Dec 15 while cleaning the kitchen of a McDonald’s outlet in Pueblo Libre in Lima province.

Porras suffered electric shock while handling a faulty soda machine. Campos too suffered electric shock when he tried to save her. Both of them were dead by the time emergency services arrived.

The National Superintendency of Labor Inspection (Sunafil) faulted the company on six counts.

The labour watchdog found that the deaths of the workers were not communicated in a timely manner.

The company did not ensure a safe working environment to its employees. Facilities provided to them were poor and the equipment were dangerously faulty like the soft drink dispensing machine. The company did nothing to repair the damaged soda machine.

The death of the two employees sparked protests over workplace safety, poor pay and exploitative use of casual labourers.

Allaying the fears of workers in Peru, Labour Minister Sylvia Caceres said on Thursday that officials will be conducting several spot inspections in a year replacing the current system of one inspection per year.