If you have a busy warehouse as part of your business, you need to make sure that all your warehouse workers are as safe as possible in their workplace. Warehouses are infamous for accidents and near-misses, and the more you do to avoid ensure that your warehouse is safe, the better your space will be and the happier your staff will be too.
As the owner of your business, it is your responsibility to make sure that your workplace is a safe space. In a warehouse this comes with a few extra details on top of the usual health and safety inspections and training sessions on how to lift a box.
Here are the areas you should focus on.
Storing and Moving
In a warehouse there is always something arriving and something leaving. That means that on any given day, there will be plenty of moving about and rearranging. Usually forklifts are involved, especially in the handling of large and/or heavy items. And this is where the most common incidents occur. 95,000 warehouse employees are injured every year in forklift accidents and 100 employees are killed.
To avoid forklift accidents, make sure that all your warehouse employees are aware of the dangers and are fully competent in using them safely. It might be tempting to move faster to get jobs done quicker, but staying slow will minimize problems and is always better. You should also make sure that the thing you are moving is well secured and has a safe place to be deposited.
Trip Hazards, Gaps and Unclear Signage
Many warehouses have high platforms or holes that are used for safely loading stock. However, these areas if not well marked and protected can be a real danger for your workers. While all your warehouse employees should have a good working knowledge of your warehouse, there is no excuse for failing to protect them where they might fall and injure themselves.
A simple solution is to use loading dock safety gates to prevent any accidents happening in these dangerous areas. And if you want to be doubly protected, use safety nets to arrest their fall should an accident still happen.
Trip hazards should also be clearly marked or avoided where possible. This means making sure that walkways are cleared and there is proper signage where accidents could happen.
Training and Educating
Health and safety isn’t just about the layout of your warehouse or the precautions you take to ensure that the layout and equipment is fully working. Health and safety training is paramount to ensuring that your workplace is well run and avoiding accidents.
This means that all your staff should know what to do to prevent accidents, where emergency escape routes are and what to do should an accident happen. All of your staff need to have the proper training, not just a few, because it only takes one person doing the wrong thing for disaster to strike. You staff might think that spending an afternoon on health and safety training is a boring waste of time, but it really could save their lives.
Safe warehouse staff are happy warehouse staff.