Warehouse safety is massively important for the health and wellbeing of employees. Accidents can happen in all workplaces but with warehouses being particularly hazardous, it's vital you take the right precautions and abide by the correct best practices. So, we’ve put together a simple list of quick and easy warehouse safety tips that will always ensure you’re not at risk in the workplace.
Protective Clothing and Equipment
Make sure that you wear the correct protective clothing and use the right equipment at all times. A lot of potential injuries come as a result of someone not wearing the right gear. Warehouse protective clothing and equipment include gloves, hi-vis vests, tool belts and proper slip-resistant and supportive shoes.
The correct footwear is often overlooked. You’re going to be on your feet all day, so you need to be comfortable. Plus, the right support and cushioning prevent any joint pain or back injuries from flaring up. Slip-resistant soles minimise the risk of slips, trips and falls which are the second most common accident in a warehouse.
We recommend Elevate81. The S1 and CE certified work shoe is perfect for those long, gruelling shifts in the warehouse and is sure to keep you safe from the various hazards.
Clean Areas at All Times
All areas and aisles should be kept clean at all times. When unpacking pallets and loads, it can be easy to clutter up working areas. This obviously creates more possible tripping hazards, which is something that nobody needs. Always make sure that all debris is removed straight away from aisles. If you don’t move it straight away, you could walk away and forget about it. You don’t want to be the reason why somebody is injured, do you?
Be careful when cleaning areas with cleaning products as wet floors are a hazard. Make sure that you remove as much excess water and fluids from the situation and put signs up to notify workers that the area may be a little more slippery and to take extra caution. This will make a huge difference and should reduce the number of slips, trips and falls. Wearing slip-resistant warehouse safety footwear will also eliminate any risk of a potential accident.
Correct Machine Operation
There are various large machines in warehouses that require additional, extensive training for you to operate. Never try and operate a machine that you haven’t been trained to work on. If you haven’t been trained, you don’t know the correct way to operate it and rectify it should things go wrong, therefore you’re leaving yourself wide open and more prone to accidents.
Also, only operate the machines the way you’ve been taught. Never cut corners or take shortcuts - that’s how accidents happen regularly and it can be easily avoidable.
Use Equipment where Necessary
Over the course of a working week in a warehouse, you’ll be carrying out a lot of lifting. This can take its toll on your back and can often lead to different, unfortunate injuries.
Some loads are too heavy to carry, so equipment is needed. Use this equipment as much as possible to help keep you and reduce the risk of accidents. Plus, never be afraid to utilise two workers on a lift.
Stack Materials Correctly
Incorrectly stacked materials present a hazard. Racking that has been stacked incorrectly is very dangerous - especially if it's at a height. Items can shift even without any contact and fall off the racking, resulting in injuring somebody below.
Combined with the fact that many warehouses have high ceilings, items falling from a height can really cause some serious damage.
Reduce this risk by ensuring that the heavier items are packed towards the bottom of the racking and that the racking itself is maintained regularly.
Report Safety Hazards Immediately
If you see a new safety hazard that isn’t accounted for in the risk assessment that you’ll have been briefed on, inform your supervisor immediately. The longer you leave it without telling anybody, the longer the hazard is there posing a greater threat to the workforce.
New hazards could be something as little as debris in the aisles, or something very serious like a vehicle being driven dangerously on site. Don’t hesitate to tell your supervisor, no matter how big or small the issue is.
We recommend Rocket81 to keep you safe from any hazard that poses a great threat to your safety.
Warehouses are very busy places, so it’s vital that you stay alert and focused at all times. When approaching corners, turn with caution and always look both ways when crossing an aisle. Being involved in an accident with a moving vehicle loaded with heavy pallets is likely to cause severe injuries and may cause you to have time off work, therefore losing income.
Find Out More About Safety in the Workplace
Safety in warehouses is absolutely vital. So, you need to know the ins and outs of the laws and regulations and how you can maintain a high level of safety in the warehouse. If you’re not sure on these or need further reading, download our free comprehensive guide below. It covers everything you need to know about health and safety levels in warehouses.