How to avoid accidents in the warehouse

Safety in any warehouse facility should be of paramount importance for every business. Cutting corners and not following correct procedures can lead to serious accidents and costly consequences for the company as a whole.

In an environment that has a lot of risks and movement of objects and machinery, staff will only feel secure if they know clear safety guidelines are being used. And it goes without saying that with so much money invested into stock, poor safety also means a higher risk of losing valuable goods.

In this article we go into more detail about how to avoid accidents in the warehouse by following some simple steps.

Pallet Racking Safety Inspections

By law your pallet racking system should be regularly checked for stability and safety. The pallet system will be one of busiest areas in the warehouse on a daily basis, which means it should be thoroughly checked for safety. It must be installed by a qualified and experienced shelving installation company and staff should undergo full training on how to stack and retrieve items correctly.

Falls from high places

Falling from a ladder or platform can lead to serious or even fatal outcomes. Staff must be aware of how to use ladders, not only in terms of going up and down safely, but ensuring they are stable and strong enough to bear the weight. Guardrails are good way of reducing risks as well as consistent training for staff about the shelving units they are working with at height.

Bad posture when lifting

There is a lot of lifting involved for staff in warehouses and while bending over to quickly pick up a heavy object can save time, it can also lead to bad injuries and long layoffs for staff. Not only is this bad news for the individual employee, it also means you are a work person short while still paying out a monthly wage. A back injury can occur straight away or develop over time. All staff should be trained on the correct posture to use when lifting and how to assess a situation to know when it is too heavy to lift by themselves.

Accidents with forklifts

Forklifts are constantly on the move in the warehouse and these large, heavy machines can cause accidents if not driven carefully. Only trained employees should ever be driving a forklift and other members must always be aware of where they are and machinery working around them. Forklift drivers should have regular training to ensure they are aware of the safety guidelines in the warehouse and their responsibilities of using the machinery.

Slips and falls

With so much movement going on in the warehouse, the danger of slipping and falling is quite high. There can be any number of items or debris left lying around, which can to dangerous falls. Make sure staff are aware that walkways should be kept clear and that any spillages need to be cordoned off and cleared up quickly. Good lighting in the warehouse is also essential as it ensures no accidents can occur in areas with poor visibility.

Fire Hazards

To keep the warehouse staff safe in the event of a fire, you should have clearly marked fire exits and locations identified in the facility. Fire extinguishers should be available for small, localised fires and training should be provided so staff know what to do if a fire breaks out. Ensure any exposed wires in the warehouse are fixed and covered, while also paying attention to any spills or leakages that can possibly be flammable. The area must be shut down immediately if something is noticed and the management or fire officer notified straight away.

Richard Haynes has been in the industrial warehouse industry for many years. You can find him on <a rel="author"