Warehouse Safety – 10 Easy Ways To Improve Yours
Employee safety should be of great concern to every employer. Employers are responsible for everything from the safety of the building to the way they carry out procedures. Safety measures need to be in place by law, but there are changes you can make, above and beyond regulation, that can improve your warehouse safety tenfold. The safety and wellbeing of your employees should be a top priority as lack of safety can be costly to you.
Tips to Improve Your Warehouse Safety
We’ve gathered a few tips and tricks for improving your warehouse safety. Take a look below and start making your workplace safer today.
1. Safe vehicle and equipment usage
Anyone who is using vehicles or machinery should have full training, even if he does not have the certification. Forklifts in particular cause a huge number of injuries, around 95,000, every year. To use a forklift, an employer must be over 18 and have full certification before use.
Other ways you can improve the safety of vehicle operation within your warehouse are by adding bumpers to racking and columns and having strict disciplinary procedures for anyone misusing the equipment.
2. Personal protective equipment
PPE must be provided to every employee. PPE includes suitable footwear, usually steel-capped boots, hard hats, masks, and goggles. High visibility clothing is also helpful in increasing safety as it makes pedestrians much easier to see from vehicles.
3. Moving and handling
In 2018/19, 6.9 million workdays were lost due to injuries from poor moving and handling. This shows the need for proper training for every employee in the correct way to lift and move objects.
With 20% of non-fatal accidents happening in the workplace in 18/19 because of poor moving and handling, this is an obvious and easy way to improve the safety of your warehouse.
4. Shelf and racking safety
Every shelf will have a maximum weight and employees should be trained in the correct way to distribute this weight evenly across the shelves to ensure their safety. Furthermore, employees should also be trained to ensure that no objects are loose or able to fall from the shelves.
Falling objects caused 10% of non-fatal injuries in the workplace in 2018/19, so with proper training, this figure could easily be decreased.
Proper signage can increase the safety of your warehouse in seconds. Brightly colored signage should already be in place to indicate emergency stations, such as fire exits, first aid kits, and eye washing stations.
For increased safety, try adding signage for vehicles, such as floor markings. Adding in floor-markings can separate vehicles from pedestrians and decrease the number of collisions in your warehouse.
6. Guard rails or stanchions
And another way to separate pedestrians and vehicles could be to add in guard rails or stanchions. Not only will this decrease the number of collisions, but it will also ensure that vehicle operators move more slowly and with more concentration around the warehouse.
7. Working at a height
The biggest cause of fatal accidents and a ¼ of all workplace deaths in 2018/19, working at a height must be carried out with extreme care. Employees must receive training in the proper procedures for working at a height. Of course, they should avoid it wherever possible.
Employers should approve using only proper machinery, such as MEWP. Also, They should make sure that where necessary, only fully qualified employees with adequate certifications will use them.
Good lighting is a very simple way to increase safety in your warehouse. Being able to see signage, walkways, and equipment properly can ensure that people will follow safety procedures.
It is possible to avoid hazards and deal with them if employees can see them properly. Therefore, fitting adequate lighting can improve the safety of your workplace.
9. Regular retraining
Regular team meetings and retraining sessions can ensure that all team members know up-to-date safety procedures. Covering common causes of workplace incidents, such as slips and trips, can help to keep employees aware of hazards and potential incidents throughout their time in employment.
10. Employee wellbeing
Fatigue, exhaustion, and other distractions can cause accidents and incidents in the workplace. Employees who are overtired or overworked may not be as focused, nor as alert, as is necessary to maintain proper safety standards.
As an employer, you can ensure employees’ wellbeing by making sure their shifts aren’t too long, that they are getting enough breaks for the shifts they are working, and that there is enough time for adequate rest in between shifts.
Employee well-being, both in terms of physical safety and mental, is your responsibility as an employer, and properly looking after it can ensure a more productive and focussed team.
The safety of your warehouse and your staff is your responsibility as an employer. Following regulations can ensure this safety and add in extra precautions can only increase the safety of the workplace.
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