VANCOUVER, WA (KPTV) – A Vancouver Dollar Tree store is facing one of the largest fines from the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries.

Tim Church, the public affairs manager for L&I, says the Dollar Tree at 6700 Northeast 162nd Avenue has had several inspections, and yet continued violations. Now, they’re being fined for $503,200.

Church says merchandise is improperly stored at the store and could make it difficult to get out of the building in an emergency.

“A fire, an earthquake, a violent situation, you need to be able to get out of that store in some way besides going out the front door,” Church said.

Church says boxes in some cases are stacked eight feet high, sometimes even blocking aisles, making them too narrow. The list of violations also includes unsafe ladder use at the Vancouver location.

“They assured us they would be fixed or taken care of immediately,” Church said. “We went back again and essentially those things that we were told were going to be fixed, they were doing the same way again.”

Church says within the last six years the company faced more than a $1 million in fines for safety violations in Washington state.

“The more times they are told how to do it right and they keep doing it wrong, the bigger the fine ends up and the more serious the violation is considered,” Church said.

Dollar Tree is now subject to inspections at any time.

The company appealed the citation, which could take several months to go through the appeals process. The company on Thursday had no comment about the citation.

Copyright 2019 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.

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