How To Avoid Warehouse Accidents
Warehouses present various risks that need to be managed at all times. They often happen when people take shortcuts on basic safety procedures. Think about all the potential hazards at play here:
- Forklifts are the top offender for common causes of accidents
- Racking Collapse
- Items falling from racks
- Spillages causing slip and fall accidents
- Machinery/equipment being used improperly
- Workers falling from ladders
- Fire exits being blocked when a hazardous event occurs
- Electrical wiring issues mean a high risk of electrocution
- Electrical work including lighting
- Dangerous substances being touched or leaking
So, how do you stop any of these issues from causing safety problems in your warehouse?
Well, here are some simple steps to take:
Train your employees
Before anyone gets let out onto the warehouse floor, they must go through appropriate training measures. Teach everyone the correct technique for lifting heavy boxes, so they don’t put their back out. Ensure any forklift operators go through the extensive driver safety training, so they know how to operate the vehicle – the same goes for any other equipment/machinery that’s being used as well. This prevents needless accidents caused by worker carelessness.
Invest in a safe racking system
Lower the risk of items falling from heights by investing in a racking system that best suits your business needs. Pallet racking is highly popular as it lets you store items at dizzy heights, but you must ensure your pallets are being stored correctly. This prevents them from slipping off the shelf and falling to the floor. Do not stack too many heavy items all on the same pallet; space items out so you don’t run the risk of overloading your system and causing and accident. Nene have a team of trained experts that can provide any advise you require.
Clear signs within your warehouse are key and must inform employees about different safety threats. A ‘caution’ sign near dangerous substances stops people from accidentally touching them. Put up signs directing people to the nearest emergency exit in case the alarm goes off. If there’s a spillage, make sure there’s a clear sign there to inform staff of the hazard.
Make sure your team wears the correct safety gear
Even as accidents happen, injuries can be prevented if safety gear is worn. Goggles protect the eyes from sawdust or chemicals, gloves protect hands from getting cuts and grazes, safety hats and boots protect the head and feet from falling objects. So, ensure nobody on your warehouse floor is without all the right gear on.
Store hazardous packages/materials separately
Create a separate section in your warehouse for anything containing chemicals – or other dangerous materials. If you mix these in with regular items, then you increase the risk of them causing accidents. If they are safely stored in their own space with clear signage then people can avoid accidentally touching them or knocking them over.
Use the advice in this blog to boost the safety of your warehouse and avoid the many common accidents
- Establish a culture of safety in logistical operations including having drawings of the warehouse layout and aisles
- Train your staff rigorously
- Inspect your racking and warehouse bi-annually using SEMA approved inspectors
- Promote employee accountability
- Sign the warehouse with the correct wayward signage including exits and bio-hazard chemicals labelling