A warehouse can be full of potential hazards. After all, it’s a large building with lots going on, potentially large machinery running, staff dodging each other and trying to get things done, and more. This is why safety is so important when you’re trying to run a warehouse. Your employees are not only your most valuable and important resource, but they are also irreplaceable. They are human beings with families, interests, and more. They deserve protection and to feel safe at their job. There are many easy steps you can take to make your warehouse safer and prevent accidents and injuries.
Post-Safety Guidelines in Multiple Places
When you have multiple large machines moving at the same time, as well as multiple people trying to run them, it’s sometimes easy to make a small mistake that could lead to big consequences. As such, it’s a good idea to post warehouse safety guidelines and operating instructions in multiple locations around your warehouse. Posting these instructions near machines is a good idea so that employees can easily double-check if they have any questions about how to operate those machines.
Maintain Safe Floors
Your employees will most likely do a lot of walking throughout the day. They’ll go up and down aisles, from machine to machine, back and forth all day long. It’s very important to make sure your floors are free of tripping or slipping hazards. Be sure to keep debris out of the aisles in your warehouse, and ensure that your employees know to always put things back where they belong rather than leaving anything out where it could be tripped over. If a spill happens, make sure that employees know to put up a “Wet Floor” sign immediately, alert a supervisor, and get the spill cleaned up as soon as possible so that nobody slips and injures themselves. Getting any stray electrical cords out of the way is also vitally important to warehouse safety. If an electrical cord absolutely must stretch across an aisle, tape it down to avoid creating a trip hazard.
Proper attire is a huge part of keeping yourself and your employees safe in a warehouse environment. Everyone must be visible and wearing protective equipment. This means hard hats, fluorescent vests, eye protection (safety glasses or goggles), cut-resistant gloves, and a mandatory closed-toe shoe policy. This type of clothing will help your employees stay safe, as well as helping them be more visible to those who may be driving forklifts and other mobile equipment.
Practice Proper Lifting Techniques
Lifting injuries are one of the most common types of injuries in a warehouse setting. However, they’re easy to prevent with proper training. Every employee needs to be trained on how to properly lift items, and reminded of those guidelines frequently to increase warehouse safety. It’s important to remember to lift with your legs rather than with your back, know how much you can and can’t lift and ask for help if you need it, and never attempt to move something with your body if you should be moving it with a pallet jack or other machine. If employees follow these guidelines, there will likely be fewer injuries in your warehouse.
Mirrors are a great idea to make your warehouse safer, especially around the loading dock. Placing mirrors in corners can help prevent accidents because it allows people to see each other around the corner. Laying fluorescent tape at the edges of the loading dock can also keep employees safer by alerting them to where the edge is. This can prevent accidental falls off the edge. Employees also need to know that there is a possibility of getting pinned between a truck and the loading dock and know the procedures to prevent that from happening. Loading dock employees need to wear extra-visible clothing to ensure that truck drivers can see them.
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