Warehouse safety: it matters
At every step of the supply chain, employee safety needs to be a primary focus.
With the warehouse often being one of the first and/or last destinations in the supply chain process, the health and safety of all warehouse staff is a critical factor to be mindful of. The very simple truth is this: safety matters.
Assessing and managing risks
You want to keep risks under control, and warehouses can have a wealth of different potential dangers. Are walkways and rails stable? Is the integrity of warehouse shelves acceptable? Are the picker machines and forklifts all being properly maintained? There are a large range of variable dangers and consistent risks that can exist. For those that you can fix (e.g. a forklift in need of repairs), be sure to do so ASAP.
With those risks where they can’t be completely removed (human error, heavy objects, etc.), you need to educate your staff on these risks. This may include wearing high visibility vests, lifting heavier objects between two or three people, providing them with information as to what they should do when they feel they could have injured themselves. For those working in cold rooms, you need to afford them more consistent breaks so that they don’t succumb to those temperatures that often sit in the minus range.
Revise safety standards
Make sure you remain up to date with current safety standards and regulations for your industry. While they may not change drastically over a period of time, there can come those moments where significant changes or new requirements may be implemented. You may perceive certain safety standards as a little heavy-handed, but they exist for a reason; they’re identifying key points of potential danger for staff within certain industries / work environments and offering very real safety solutions to reduce these risks.
Have emergency response plans in place
If an employee does happen to sustain a serious injury that needs immediate attention, it is in your best interest to have an official response plan in place, especially if your business is located in a rural area with a limited number of paramedics. With an official response plan in place, you’ll at least spend less time stressing out with how deal the situation, and actually spend more time keeping your employee in a better condition until paramedics arrive on the scene.
In the interest of employee health, it’s a good idea to encourage your staff to take a first aid and CPR course. If you believe it is imperative for them to know first aid and CPR, then you should make taking a course compulsory.
In what other ways would you improve warehouse safety? Share your tips in the comments below.