A Tennessee McDonald’s franchisee is in trouble with the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) for a burn injury suffered by a teen worker.
The 15-year-old employee was removing food from a manual deep fryer when they suffered burns from the hot oil.
Wage and Hour Division investigators found that the teen was illegally allowed to cook french fries using a hot oil deep fryer without an automatic basket to lower and raise its contents.
Use of a manual frying basket is considered a hazardous task for teen workers and is in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
The franchisee, Faris Enterprises of TN LLC, was fined $3,258 for the violation.
‘Alarming increase in child labor violations’
“Since 2018, we have seen an alarming increase in federal child labor violations, including allowing minors to operate equipment or do types of work that endangers them or employing them for more hours or later in the day than federal law allows,” Wage and Hour Division District Director Lisa Kelly said. “Any employer who hires young workers must know what work they are allowed to do and when they can and cannot work. Unfortunately, our investigators are finding too many employers who are unaware of the law or chose to ignore it.”
Wage and Hour Division investigators have found 688 minors employed in hazardous occupations in fiscal year 2022, the highest annual count since fiscal year 2011.
For more information about regulations regarding teen workers, click here.