Here’s a riddle for you: what do you get when you cross the common hazards found in any brick-and-mortar business with the dangers associated with a transportation occupation?
Answer: the perils that are present in a typical warehouse.
Think about it: warehouses often combine pedestrians, desk workers, fully-stocked aisles, moving forklifts, and loading or unloading vehicles. As a result, there’s a lot of potential mishaps or calamities that can occur at any given moment. In fact, it’s amazing that warehouse accidents don’t occur on a monthly (or even weekly) basis at a given location.
Did you know that 20,000 forklift accidents occur every year in the U.S.?
Naturally, warehouse owners take great pains to make sure that all of the major safety standards as set forth by OSHA are met and maintained. That said, there are some easy and inexpensive ways to improve the safety level of your warehouse or similar facility.
- Safety signs. This seems intuitive, but most warehouses could use a few more strategically-placed, eye-catching signs to point out dangers to people who may not be paying close attention.
- Bright floor tape. This can be used to delineate aisles and walkways from work areas, or even to mark lanes for pedestrians and forklifts or other mechanical traffic.
- Forklift-only and/or pedestrian-only lanes. Designating lanes to keep people and machines separate (preferably with a sturdy railing of some sort) could minimize the odds of a forklift-pedestrian collision.
- Guardrails. Sure, these can act as barriers to protect dangerous areas. But putting guardrails on corners or in similar spots will force forklift operators to exercise more care instead of cutting corners.
- Safety screens/curtains. These can set off specific work areas from the rest of the warehouse. Plus, they can help prevent spray, dust, or even airborne debris from flying all over the place.
- Bright clothing. These can be vests, shirts, hats, or even overalls with vividly-visible colors. The more noticeable people are, the less likely someone else will run into them with a vehicle or forklift.
Well… it’s bright all right.
- Improved lighting. Similarly, more powerful ceiling lights and/or additional wall or aisle lighting will make every person and object more visible, which reduces the risk of accidents.
- Sturdy cable covers. The protective coverings for wires and cables can erode due to heavy foot or vehicle traffic, thereby causing a fire hazard. Put a cable cover on them to eliminate this problem.
- Entry mats. Did you know that slip-and-fall accidents are the most common type of warehouse injuries? Placing floor mats near all entryways will help keep warehouse floors dry and safe.
- Anti-fatigue mats. For assembly line workers or other employees who stand a lot, an anti-fatigue mat can keep them healthy and alert – which boosts productivity and lowers the chances of a workplace accident.
This can save an employee from a lot of aches and soreness.
Ultimate Mats offers a wide selection of floor mats that are perfectly suited for entry areas, outdoor locations, and interior doorways. In addition, Ultimate Mats can provide your warehouse with anti-fatigue mats for people who are on their feet for long hours; as well as a logo mat which can be displayed near a high-traffic area of your warehouse. For details, check out the Ultimate Mats website to see how their products can make your warehouse significantly safer.
Image credit #3: Ultimate Mats
Written by Chris Martin