A safe and secure work environment is essential for employees’ safety, your business’s reputation and your status as a business owner. Warehouses, however, have some of the highest rates for workplace accidents in the country. How do you practice safety in an environment as unpredictable as a warehouse? Here are some of our best tips for warehouse safety.
Report Any Noncompliance to OSHA
Whether or not you perceive noncompliance occurring, it is important to report any doubts or concerns to OSHA. The Occupational Safety and Health Act (1970) states that any employee has “the right to file a complaint and request an OSHA inspection of their workplace if they believe there is a serious hazard or their employer is not following OSHA standards.” Any complaint can be filed online, by mail or by telephone.
Ensure That All Employees Know Safety Procedures
Do your employees know the safety protocol in case of an emergency? Your crews should review and practice safety procedures at least once a quarter. A protocol can include procedures, communication and reporting. We also recommend that a handbook should be on file for all employees to access if necessary.
Provide All Personnel With Personal Protective Gear
One of the best ways to prevent workplace accidents and injuries is to make sure that your employees are properly protected. Personal protective gear can encompass a variety of materials, including hard hats, fluorescent vests, goggles and more. However, nothing is foolproof. If an injury does occur, it should be reported immediately.
Keep the Environment as Clean as Possible
We understand that keeping a warehouse clean can be a demanding task, no matter the size of the establishment. However, organization and cleanliness can go a long way. Ensure that no clutter or fallen objects block major pathways; maintain an organized system; and make sure that your employees do their part to keep the warehouse clean. These steps are especially important if your employees manage toxic materials or waste.
Practice Proper Vehicle Safety
Vehicles are essential to an efficient warehouse. However, they are also high-risk factors for workplace accidents. There are many ways to practice vehicular safety, including making sure that all employees are trained to drive the equipment. Speed limits should always be followed, and reversing should be avoided if necessary. Vehicles should also be regularly inspected and maintained.
Minimize All Lifting Risks When Possible
Physical labor is an accepted and understood aspect of the warehouse industry. Yet, that doesn’t mean it should occur without caution or with abandon. Similar to practicing vehicular safety, there are many ways to ensure your employees are safe while lifting heavy objects. For example, you should train your staff in safely handling and lifting objects. Establish a maximum safe lifting load. If at all possible, avoid physical labor when able. Your employees will thank you.
In summary, nothing is foolproof; however, nothing is more important than the safety of yourself and your employees. As a warehouse manager, it is your responsibility to ensure that safety is enforced in the warehouse. We hope that these tips provide guidance on how to make the workplace safer and more productive. If your warehouse needs to be optimized for safety, then visit www.portcitymobile.com to learn more about the services that we offer here at Port City Industrial.