"One time, one of my coworkers came to work on some stuff and was violent. He started bashing things with a large knife and spilling enchilada sauce all over the floor and just staring at people. I was 16 years old at the time, so this was disturbing and scary to me. Thought for sure he was going to stab someone. I believe he ended up in jail shortly after, so I didn't see much of him after that"
"I was outside, smoking on my break. We had to smoke by the employee parking area, and as I was sitting there, I saw a person crouched down in between two of my fellow employees' cars and another car that was nearby, with the engine running and someone else in it. Obviously, it looked suspicious, so I went inside and alerted my manager. He was like, 'Oh crap, someone's trying to steal my car!' So he ran out along with the assistant manager, with me following behind. When we got outside, the mysterious car was already speeding out of the parking lot, with my manager's stolen car pulling out of the spot. My manager ran out to stop the guy (bad idea) and got slammed by this dude stealing the car. It was INSANE. The car drove off, and I called 911. The manager broke both legs, I think, and was out for almost a year."
"A cocky guy that I worked with at a restaurant was cleaning the deep fryers one day. I told him maybe a dozen or so times that I could help him move the HOT oil over to the side to cool down instead of doing it himself. He kept refusing it every time I asked, then being the cocky guy he was, picked it up instead of dragging it on wheels. Then he slipped and it fell all over him. The sound of his scream is still etched into my head and the vision of boiling skin won't go away anytime soon. If the dummy would of just let me help, he wouldn't have burned his face and arms. Luckily for him, he wore glasses, and didn't get it in his eyes."
"As a teenager, I worked at a Sonic Drive-In. One summer night, a couple months after I had turned 16 years old, there were only a few of us left before close. I had a headache, so the manager was car-hopping for me and the cook was in the kitchen.
All of a sudden, I heard a noise and looked up and a guy dressed in all black with a ski mask on was in front of me, pointing a weapon between my eyes. Dude told me, 'Yo, open the cash drawer!' I actually laughed, thinking it was a coworker playing a messed up prank on me. When it became apparent that he was not joking, I panicked, trying to explain that I am not a manager and don't have a key. He pointed at the safe on the ground, telling me to open it. Once again, I am useless because I don't know the combination.
The entire time, the cook was standing about four feet behind him, just dumbfounded and watching everything happen. I was blubbering like an idiot, staring down the barrel of this weapon pointed between my eyes, knowing that I was about to die because I was not giving the guy anything he wanted.
I still don't know why, but the dude swore loudly and turned around to leave. As he ran by the cook, he lifted the weapon up and shot him in the side of the face. I screamed and the dude continued out the back, never getting any money.
I ran to the cook, who by now was standing with one hand covering the entrance wound and blood pouring out of his mouth, and grab him as he collapsed at my feet, leaving a pool of blood around my feet.
The manager came in, I freaked and told her to call an ambulance and get some towels to hold pressure while this kid, only a couple of years older than me, was bleeding out on the floor.
The ambulance arrived and carted him away. Multiple surgeries later, the kid lived by some miracle. The bullet shattered his jaw and nicked his jugular, hence the blood, but otherwise lucky.
The robbers (there were three: shooter, getaway driver, and look out) were caught and sent to prison.
Worst day of my life. Traumatized for years. To this day, I can't be around weapons. Too many flashbacks."
"I used to work at a Pizza Hut in a bad part of town. I was working one night, and this guy had been calling and complaining all day that his pizza sauce was too spicy. We remade and delivered that pizza three times, and each time the guy was dissatisfied. Finally, we were getting near closing time, so the last time the guy called, the manager told him that there was nothing more he can do for him and he's not sending another driver out. If he wants, he's welcome to come down to the store and we can issue him a refund. So now it's almost closing, I'm not issued as someone with closing duties, so I'd clocked out and was about to leave when the spicy guy came in with his pizza.
This guy was tweaking. He was obviously on something and absolutely deranged. But we processed the refund and told him he can keep the pizza. Well, he wanted us to try it. He opened the box and kept repeating, 'Nah man, you have to try this pizza! So spicy! You guys must be putting chiltepins in it or something! Try my pizza! You gotta try my pizza!' While repeatedly jabbing his finger into the pizza, getting sauce all over him. For the record, this sauce is not spicy. If anything, it's disgustingly sweet. But none of us wanted to try this old pizza that this guy was repeatedly jamming his grubby finger into, so we kept politely declining. Soon politely switched to bluntly. Then bluntly switched to asking him to leave. He packed up his pizza and left without a fuss, and we were all left awkwardly standing there.
As the guy pulled away, I decided to break the silence. I turned to my co-worker, who I had a bit of a crush on, and said, 'Hey, [coworker], want to try my pizza?' And we both started giggling. Well, the spicy guy saw us giggling through the window, zoomed back into his parking spot and bolted back into the store, screaming, 'You think something is funny?' Then he climbed onto the counter and screamed, 'Are you laughing at me, you punk? Come outside with me! I'll teach you a lesson!' while pointing angrily at my co-worker who I was hitting on. We all started panicking and telling him to leave while threatening to call the cops. He finally left, while still screaming obscenities, and my manager ran and locked the door. Okay, we're safe now, right? Nope.
This loon started circling the building in his truck waiting for someone to leave on a delivery! When he realizes we weren't that stupid, he rolled down his window and pointed a weapon at my coworker and I. We all hit the deck, the waitress was sobbing, and the manager was frantically dialing 911. The guy left before the cops showed up, but that wasn't the last of him. He kept calling the store the next day, screaming that he was going to kill us and all this stuff. Well, we had his address from deliveries. He got arrested after that.
And that's how I got almost got several people shot by asking my co-worker to eat me."
"I worked at a popular coffee shop chain for five years. One night, my only night off that week, I got a call from the shift supervisor on duty that I needed to come to the store. I wasn't the manager, but the shift supervisor with the longest tenure (longer than the manager), so I was the first phone call anyone made. Anyway, I got a call that they've shut the store down because there was a death in our parking lot.
Our parking lot is connected to one of a busy bar, and I live in a province where everyone has jacked up pickup trucks. A bunch of dudes were getting into their truck, and one guy slipped and his head ended up behind the back tire of the pickup as the driver backed up, popping it like a balloon.
I spent the next week fighting off reporters and consoling co-workers who were there that night and saw the brain matter splattered on the pavement."
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"I worked in a retail deli for seven years. I got hurt when I was cleaning a piece of machinery designed to transport used cooking oil to a tank in the back of the building. While cleaning it, I slipped and the base of my thumb grazed the sharp metal edge where the oil went in. I got cut and ended up getting eight stitches. I have a small scar there now, but nothing major.
However, the worst I've ever seen, though, was when a fellow employee cut the tips of two of her fingers off in the slicer. She screamed and ran past me into the backroom. I saw her clutching her fingers and I knew she got hurt, so I immediately called management, who called an ambulance. I looked over and the two teenage girls whom she had been helping were staring at me angrily like they were upset she didn't finish their order. A few weeks later, she returned to work, now as a door greeter, fingers now missing portions of flesh."
"Right out of high school, I got a job at the local Pepsi plant. My job was to stand atop the bottle line's loader and make sure none of the empty 20-ounce bottles tipped over as they came off each layer of the pallet. It was frustrating because an empty 20-ounce bottle will tip over if you clear your throat nearby, but it paid well, so I stuck it out.
After a few weeks, I was deemed worthy of an official Pepsi bottling line uniform, which should have made me happy if the shirt hasn't been two sizes too large. I was standing at my post and leaned over to flip a Mountain Dew bottle up when my shirt got caught on the conveyor. The emergency stop button was just out of reach, and I was being pulled towards the machine and my inevitable serious injury/death when my supervisor noticed and slammed the button, shutting down the machine.
My shirt was shredded, I had minor cuts and burns from where the shirt rubbed before it ripped, but I was lucky not to have been ripped in half. After that, my XXL shirt was put behind display glass and all employees were required to wear tighter fiting uniforms."
"A few years ago, I worked as a cashier/bagger at a grocery market. I was 16 years old at the time. This particular day, I was a bagger and on bagger duty, we had to collect carts.
It had just become dark and I was gathering carts. I was in front of the building, but off to the side, so I could see down the side of the building. I heard some incoherent screaming and looked in the direction of the side of the building. I couldn't see anything well, but made out some figures of people crouched down. Without thinking, I approached the group, just a little bit, and called out, 'Are you okay?' When they heard my voice, the group of people bolted. There remained a guy on the ground, groaning. I ran up to him. He was trying to get up but was disorientated. At a closer view, his face was covered in blood, so much so that I could hardly see his face.
He fell towards me and being a much younger and smaller stature girl his body was braced against mine, but only barely. That's when my manager ran up next to me and took the guy to the front of the store. He told me to go inside and clean up any blood on me and to clock out ASAP. I did as he said. After a few weeks, I was working cashier one day and a man smiling hard as ever came through my line. At that moment, I didn't see anything weird with it -- working at a grocery market you meet all kinds of people -- but when he came to me he said, 'My angel, it's you!'
He explained to me that he was the man being attacked in the parking lot. He told me that he is homeless and a group of teenagers attacked him in an attempt to rob him. He was so severely beaten that they had to put him in an emergency coma to rewire his jaw, which had been broken into several pieces as well as skull restructure surgery. I couldn't believe what I was hearing. He thanked me for a while, saying if I had not come along, he might have died from blood loss from further beating.
The guy came in a few times after that, and each time he called me his angel. It was heartwarming, but also such a crazy experience."
"I was working as a bartender when I was 21. This place was your regular local college bar that never turned down a fake ID but wasn't in the best of neighborhoods, so we would get seedy people in there who caused problems with these young and dumb college kids. One night, the vibe starting off was weird. There were a lot of older guys there and you could just tell they wanted to start a problem. Sure enough, they did. I don't remember what it was about, but one of them got into an argument with one of our off-duty, male bartenders.
We have security and a lot of it. All these guys are huge and fit and some of them are Marines. I've seen bar brawls, but this one spun out of control fast. Within seconds, our biggest and most intimidating security guard had his nose smashed, and was bleeding everywhere while these guys were going in on him. I mean, this security guy was all muscle and crazy tall. If he was getting a beating, you know it's bad. At this point, I was behind the bar, I couldn't leave because I'd get caught in the middle. There was only one opening in and out of the bar area and I was standing right there because I was in fight or flight mode.
At this point, everyone had run for the exits because chairs were being thrown and hit over people's heads. And these seedy guys were about to come behind the bar, pushing another security guard into the center opening while going at it, hitting him square in the face. I was thinking, 'Crap, I'm alone back here. No one is going to protect me or my money. I need a weapon,' so I grabbed two bottles in each hand and, I broke them both on the bar, ready to stab one of these dudes if they came any further. I guess it worked because I never had to stab anyone.
The owner was in such a rage he ended up attacking me that night. Put both of his hands around my neck and throttled/choked me. We got into words after the fight broke up because he was blaming everyone there for what happened. I defended myself because all I did that night was show my goods and do my job like I'm supposed to, and he flipped out. Came after me. The bloodied up security then had to pull him off of me and rushed me out the door. It was scary. I went from having to protect myself from strangers to having someone I thought of as family actually attack me.
Anyways, crazy night. I didn't work there ever again, and I did press charges. But life goes on."
"I was working in a busy bar when the assistant manager ran out to me from the office and told me to call security.
I did it right away, but as I was doing so, I looked over to the office (it was very small with a window you could see directly into) and saw our then head chef serving a proper beat down onto our general manager.
My manager was sitting down with his head covered by his arms, and this guy was just wailing into him. I have never seen someone's arms going so fast. I can't imagine how many hits he got in. Some other kitchen guys were trying to get the door open, but there was a key code on it, so it was just a bunch of guys hammering on the door, begging the chef to stop.
The assistant manager ran back to open the door so that the guys could pull him off. He was still trying to go for it, and it took so many of them to peel him away.
Security arrived quickly and got him out of there. He was arrested and charged, and obviously never came back.
What happened could have been anyone at any time, I guess. He was having a mild argument over rotas with my assistant manager when my general manager stepped in. He just snapped. He even picked up the computer monitor in the office and smashed it to pieces in the process. My GM ended up with stitches on his head.
This whole situation probably only lasted a few minutes, but that it happened in such a busy place in the middle of the day, it was just chaos."
"I worked in a grocery distribution warehouse while I was in college. We used to drive these little trucks called tuggers and load up two pallets worth of frozen and perishables (my department), then we had to park somewhere and wrap them for shipping. The parking was pretty odd. When things got full, you just had to be in the middle and try to stay out of the way. Should also note that after wrapping, we would pick them up rather aggressively and sort of slam into them together to get all the pallets tight together.
One day, one of the ladies parked perpendicular to the other wrapping, and she was standing next to her tugger when the other lady smashed her into her truck. I was on the other side of the large room and the scream still haunts me today. It was such an uncomfortable silence and crying commenced. Thankfully, she wasn't crushed to death, but she broke her ankle pretty badly and had numerous other injuries.
That day I also learned that the 'days since accident' sign was real and it was reset to 1. We had a good streak going, apparently."
"Working in a dish room, I was loading dishes while my idiot coworker was opening some new cutlery for us to wash. He was opening bread knives by, get this, grabbing the plastic packaging and yanking the knife out of it with the blade facing his hand. Ended up pulling one out and slicing half his hand in the process. The only way I knew he cut his hand was because he managed to shoot blood all over the counter, the dishes on it, and the wall directly in front of me. I ended up having to bleach everything, including the dishes that the servers would put directly on top of the puddles of blood.
Yeah, I work with a bunch of idiots."
"I worked at a grocery store in the deli/meat department for a couple years. This one girl who worked with us would smoke a little something at work, and would always have accidents or whatever but nothing serious until one day.
While operating the meat slicer on a thin setting, she zoned out and sliced her fingertips off. Just the fingerprint side.
Well, she was on a different level, so she couldn't get workers comp or anything because they test you for that at the store. So she paid the bills, got them reattached (mostly), and came back to work.
About a month later, the same girl, was cleaning the rotisserie oven. We use a high powered acid to blast-fry it clean, and she ended up getting that stuff in the gloves (which we were legally obligated to use to clean it that are steel meshed).
She started screaming, ripped the gloves off, and her hand was like smoldering and bubbling. No one knew what to do. And it was the same hand she just cut half off, too. She couldn't file, again, because of her state of sobriety, or lack thereof.
She had some kind of surgery, then came back to work. Again. When I left, she was still there, with one hand that was gnarled and messed up."
"I worked at McDonald's. Late one night, while cleaning the shop for closing, we pranked our manager by soaking his tie in water and putting it in the walk-in freezer.
When it came out, it was more like a board than a tie. He laughed and then acted like it was a weapon and had us all line up against the window that faced the street. Like a police officer lining up a bunch of perps, making us 'spread-em' and poking each of us in the back with the (by now wilting) tie. Lots of laughing and then back to cleaning. Right?
Wrong. Turns out the store across the street had been robbed a few times in the past few weeks. Someone either in that store or maybe driving by had seen us pretending to be held up and called the cops.
About five minutes later, the place was surrounded by police in riot gear demanding entry. We were all patted down, and they searched every inch of the store.
Lots of guys. Live weapons pointed right at me. I realized later that the whole time I was holding a sharp grill spatula. If I had made even the slightest fast move with that thing, I would have been riddled with bullets faster than you could say, 'Would you like some fries with that?'"
"I worked at a bakery with a large espresso machine. I'm not familiar with how they work on the inside, but I know it involves hot water and quite a lot of pressure. Unsurprisingly, our manager was a cheapskate, at least in ways that involved employee happiness and safety - and this lead to less maintenance on the machine than required. I was the main barista, but this time I was walking back from break and the girl covering for me jumped back and screamed as the handle of one of the steam wands rocketed off and then hot water and steam were gushing out at least five feet. She was lucky she wasn't standing directly in front of that because she would've been bruised by the handle flying off and likely burned by the steam. No one could get near it until it stopped and that took five minutes."