HR Professionals: Warehouse Safety Tips You Should Know
One of the most dangerous places to work in is a warehouse. According to the U.S Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, the warehousing sector records a high number of deaths every year. These numbers can be reduced considerably by adhering to safety tips.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration makes the rules that ensure all those working in warehouses work in secure facilities following the safest procedures. They frequently conduct safety audits to ascertain every warehouse has the safest practices as specified. However, the daily safety needs of a warehouse fall on the warehouse associates.
Here are 11 practical tips that will keep your warehouse employees safe:
Ensure personal protective gear is worn
Employees should not wear loose-fitting clothes as they can get stuck in the machines leading to injury. During their shifts, employees should wear protective gear, including goggles, hard hats, ear-plugs, steel-toe boots, and fire-resistant clothing. This will make sure they are safe while working in the warehouse.
Ensure Use of Safety Machinery
It is crucial to use safety machinery like hydraulic lifts and forklifts to raise heavy products. This ensures the safety of your workers by preventing major back injuries.
Reduce Impending Safety Risks
It is vital to ensure the warehouse floors do not have slide and trip risks. It is also crucial to ensure your workers know the importance of proper housekeeping. Warehouse managers should ensure there are no liquids, cracks, stray cords, and accumulated debris on their warehouse floors. These can cause serious harm to your workers and damage valuable equipment.
Spot and Mark Dangerous Areas Clearly
The most economical and efficient way of marking hazardous areas in your warehouse is by using signs and stickers. Material, equipment, and racks should be labeled clearly to prevent severe injuries to your workers. It is also essential to clearly mark emergency exits and the routes to them.
Training your Workers on Safety Procedures
Provide your workers with proper training on warehouse safety procedures to make them conscious of the repercussions of working in an unsafe environment. This will also encourage your employees to follow processes more diligently.
Racking Safety Guidelines
It is vital to evaluate the mass a rack can hold and how the cargo can be arranged to achieve efficient distribution. This prevents your warehouse employees from getting into accidents from falling cargo.
Vehicle safety is essential in preventing crush injuries, whether your warehouse uses lift trucks or forklifts. This can be accomplished by equipping your workers with proper training on avoiding reversing when possible, and maintaining speed limits.
It is also important for your warehouse to impose a zero-tolerance policy on reckless driving.
Develop a culture within your workers where they promote awareness of potential safety risks. This way, they will alert fellow workers on passing equipment such as lift trucks, which will greatly decrease injuries. This can be accomplished through continuous communication among your workers.
Conduct Regular Fire Safety and Evacuation Drills
Test your fire and smoke alarms consistently. These drills will ensure your alarms are working and also create a safe emergency and evacuation plan. You should go ahead and install emergency lights to ensure your employees are safely evacuated during an emergency.
Ensure there is proper ventilation
One of the most vital components of a warehouse is good ventilation. However, it is often overlooked by many warehouse managers. The limited supply of air will lead to stagnation of vehicle exhaust and fumes in the warehouse, which hinders workers’ safety and comfort.
Install exhaust cans within the warehouse to facilitate proper ventilation.
Never assign duties to workers that are not licensed to perform
You should ensure that no worker performs a duty or task that they are not fully trained or licensed under no circumstance. This applies mostly to vehicle operation.
Warehouse conditions with unsatisfactory safety procedures and measures will cause severe injuries to your workers. However, when proper safety measures are implemented, these accidents can be greatly reduced.