The Wall Street Journal has learned that the Walmart paper shredding company is not selling its paper-cutting machines, citing concerns about their ability to withstand heavy rainfall.
The Walmart chain told The Wall St. Journal that the paper-rushing machines it produces for the Home Depot, Lowe’s and other retailers will be discontinued.
The company says the machines will be replaced by a new, lightweight machine.
Walmart’s decision came after an investigation into the company’s operations revealed the company had failed to report a series of high-volume incidents involving paper shredds that caused damage and killed customers.
In an emailed statement to The Hill, Walmart said it was “working closely with the National Weather Service” to develop a system to reduce the risk of paper shredging incidents and that it was working with regulators on its next steps.
“We recognize the need to enhance the protection of our workers and the public,” the company said.
“We have made it clear that we will work closely with NWS and the Department of Agriculture (USDA) to address these issues, and we are continuing to explore other options to address them.”
A paper shred machine that is designed to handle large quantities of paper would have made the machines less vulnerable to weather, and would have allowed Walmart to continue to produce them despite a recent spate of high volume incidents, the company told The Hill.
The company said it is “aware of a handful” of other reports of high volumes of paper being shredded in the last week, including one that saw a customer die and another that left one man with a concussion.
In a statement, Walmart spokesman David Bier said, “We are aware of a few incidents that we have recently been aware of, and will take appropriate action in accordance with applicable law.”