There are some industries that are more fraught with risk than others; that is the long and the short of it. These industries are more perilous because of the hazards that they present to the workers. Whilst certainly not the most dangerous profession, working in a warehouse can open up the possibility of accidents and injuries, which is why it is important that every precaution is taken. Let’s dive in.
It should be common sense, but just in case it isn’t, all equipment will need to be maintained and looked over regularly, with broken equipment being repaired or disposed of and new equipment being provided. For example, Roll Pallet has a range of products which would be ideal for a warehouse as well as resources, including a piece on the benefits of wholesale trolleys. If you have any specialist equipment, then it should only be used by those qualified to do so. Lastly, high-traffic areas will need to be mapped, and if heavy equipment like forklifts is regularly used, then this area should be separated to minimise the flow of people.
Next, your storage solutions. Any shelving or racking that you have should also be looked over regularly to assess strength and durability; depending on its size, it might also make sense to affix it to the floor or the walls as applicable. The materials on themselves also need to be looked over. If they are stacked well or even as they are used, they should be replenished and restacked safely.
The Safety of Your Workers
Now, onto the workers themselves. You are legally obligated to provide them with the necessary PPE and protective clothing, whether that is hi-vis jackets, boots, glasses, gloves, or whatever. These pieces of protective gear will also need to be reissued at regular intervals or when appropriate. Your staff also need to be trained in all areas of their job – this just makes sense because it ensures that they know how to do their jobs and, more importantly, how to do them safely. Many businesses do like to do annual refreshers to educate staff on any developments and remind them of best practices. Finally, there should be accessible first aid kits on site, and there should be a trained first aider on site at all times when workers are there carrying out tasks.
Any person in a management position within a warehouse will likely need to be able to identify and assess hazards and risks that their staff are going to face. Generally, this will relate to the topics mentioned above and a few others. Firstly, are there any materials on site that could cause spillage or be classed as flammable? The necessary precautions will need to be taken if so. Smoking or vaping inside is also obviously prohibited. Damaged equipment can cause a hazard, as can mess and untidy working practices.
As a business, your workers truly are your best resources. It is within the business’s best interests to protect and nurture them, especially in industries that could be considered more hazardous, like working in warehouses or factory settings. The elements mentioned above are by no means exhaustive, but they do offer a great jumping-off point for anybody who is new to the industry or a management position within it.