Working in a warehouse comes with all kinds of risks. Some warehouse hazards can cause serious injuries or even death. The good news is that making the warehouse a safe working environment is possible. To get everything right, you ought to familiarize yourself with the common dangers to be wary of according to the type of materials that you handle. The specific daily operations happening in your warehouse also dictate the kind of safety measures to make. How do you maintain warehouse safety?
Store Materials Properly
Most people with large warehouses find it unnecessary to store items in an organized manner. Placing things haphazardly blocks pathways, which increases the chances of falls from trips and slips. If you have shelves, ensure that nothing stored on such shelves would fall on workers. Any load that you place on the floor or pellets should be even. If you must stack items, place heavier ones at the bottom. Investing in IBC bunds helps avoid leaks and spills when storing intermediate bulk containers (IBC).
Secure Your Loading Docks
Loading docks feature workers, heavy vehicles, and cargo. Most of the time, visibility is poor at loading docks. If your dock is a high-traffic area, it poses risks to your employees. Make sure that there are signs to warn employees about the edges of the dock. Investing in dock plates, installing handrails on dock ladders and stairs, and ensuring that employees respect weight capacities can minimize the chances of accidents. You should also make the place safe for the specific types of forklifts you would be using.
Train Employees on Safety
Making your warehouse secure would not mean much if your staff is unfamiliar with all essential warehouse safety practices. Accidents happen more often when workers do not know how to stay safe in the warehouse. Whenever you hire new employees, it is crucial to train them conclusively on workplace safety. Regular refresher courses are also critical to all employees. It pays to evaluate your employee’s knowledge of safety procedures as often as possible.
Encourage the Use of Safety Equipment
Understand that employees with safety training could still injure themselves if they ignore safety equipment. Ensure that all workers wear the right protective equipment irrespective of the size of the tasks they are engaging in. If using machinery is necessary, they should use the right ones for the jobs they are doing. You should also discourage manual lifting where machines should be used.
Maintain Proper Ventilation
Most warehouses have proper ventilation. Most of the times, however, most people end impeding airflow as they pack their warehouses. If you use gasoline-powered warehouse vehicles, their exhaust can stagnate in the warehouse if ventilation is inadequate. This can cause carbon monoxide poisoning. Improper ventilation is also likely to harm stored goods depending on their type. It is advisable to check the airflow of the warehouse regularly, particularly in high-traffic zones.
It is vital to conduct safety sweeps regularly. Such sweeps help catch potential hazards. They also help determine whether workers are following safety procedures. It pays to create a checklist to ensure that you do not miss anything when conducting the sweeps.