How to Create a Safe Working Environment for Warehouse Employees: Part 1

How to Create a Safe Working Environment for Warehouse Employees: Part 1

23rd November 2020

Warehouses are among the riskier industries owing to the use of high-powered equipment and vehicles operating with close proximity of one another. This makes warehouse safety a very crucial element that requires your utmost priority to ensure your workforce is kept safe hence maximising productivity and minimising injury and damage.

Every year, thousands of illnesses, injuries, and deaths are reported in the warehousing industry, many of which result from workplace accidents, including equipment malfunction, hazardous materials, and slips or falls. To help prevent these and other warehouse accidents hence promoting an environment that prioritises safety, you need to establish efficient safety procedures relevant to your workplace. You should start from the top-down, ensuring you build the right safety values into your company culture.

There are a number of key factors that employers and safety professionals can implement to instil safety policies and procedures that can protect warehouse employees and ensure a safe working environment. Below are some of the factors.

Safety Information Resources

An employee may have the relevant certification for the job, but this may not be a guarantee that they are aware of all the necessary safety procedures or have in-depth training. You need to ensure your employees get ample opportunities for exposure to safety resources such as safety training, regular safety meetings, safety stickers, auxiliary certification programs, and signage. You can create a worker manual or handbook that contains safety procedures or post signs across the workplace to pass the message of safety to your workforce. New announcements and updates to safety guidelines should also be communicated in time to allow the workers to make the necessary arrangements as soon as possible.

The workers should be able to read and understand the language used in the signage; use multilingual stickers and signage to ensure the message is received by the workforce. You can also use visual cues to alert your workers to different hazards and how dangerous they can be. For instance, yellow is normally used for caution and red for danger. Making safety a priority in your workplace can help your workforce take it more seriously knowing the management is invested in their well-being. When purchasing equipment for your employees, ensure to go for products with the right quality and design. CE accredited fabrications are an assurance that the product meets the relevant EU health and safety guidelines and requirements.

Organisation and Storage Standards

Trip hazards and unclear walkways often result in many incidents and injuries in warehouses. Loose cables, spills, and materials and equipment left in walking paths can cause injuries or damages if an employee fails to notice them. You need to ensure to keep your warehouse organised starting with the workspaces and ensuring the pathways are free of obstructions. There are several ways of avoiding hazards that you can consider for your warehouse employees. Teach your workforce about safe practices for loading and unloading products, stacking, and storing. These practices help reduce the risk of trips and falls. Ensure the shelves and pallets are not overstacked or poorly stacked by forming a proper stacking procedure that defines the stacking procedure and the height limit for stacking the shelves.