Warehouse Hazards That Are Commonly Overlooked

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A warehouse worker collapsed in an aisle between racking systems. His colleagues rush over to assist him.

As a warehouse manager, you have a lot on your plate. From overseeing operations to ensuring productivity, safety can sometimes slip through the cracks. However, warehouse hazards that are commonly overlooked can lead to costly and dangerous situations. Let’s review some often-missed risks and how you can address them to keep your warehouse running smoothly and safely.

The Importance of Warehouse Layout

Is your warehouse laid out in an organized and efficient manner? Poor warehouse layout can lead to accidents and inefficiencies. Some common issues include crowded aisles, blocked emergency exits, and lack of designated walkways for pedestrians. These hazards are often overlooked because they may not seem immediately dangerous, but over time, they can cause serious problems.

To avoid these hazards, it’s important to regularly review and update your warehouse layout. Consider implementing clear signage for designated walkways and emergency exits. Make sure there’s enough space for forklifts and other equipment to safely maneuver through aisles. Regularly communicate with your team about the importance of keeping walkways clear and following designated paths.

Storage System Safety

Do you know if your warehouse is racking compliant? Non-compliant units can lead to serious accidents, so make it a priority to inspect and repair any damaged racking. It’s also important to properly load and evenly distribute weight on shelves to prevent collapse. Educate your team on proper stacking techniques and make sure they have the necessary equipment, such as ladders or forklifts, to safely reach higher shelves.

Proper Signage and Markings

Signs tell employees where to go and what to do in the warehouse; they also serve as a reminder of important safety protocols. However, outdated or missing signs can cause confusion and accidents. Regularly check that all signage is up to date, visible, and easy to understand.

In addition to traditional signs, consider implementing floor markings for designated walkways, hazardous areas, and emergency exits. These markings can help prevent accidents by clearly outlining safe zones for pedestrians and equipment.

Housekeeping Standards

Will a warehouse ever be perfectly clean? Probably not. But maintaining good housekeeping standards is crucial for preventing accidents. Cluttered aisles, slippery floors, and unorganized materials can all lead to injuries. Create a cleaning schedule and make sure your team understands the importance of keeping the warehouse tidy.

Equipment Maintenance and Training

Equipment that’s well-maintained operates safely and efficiently. Regular maintenance checks on forklifts, conveyor belts, and other machinery can help prevent breakdowns and accidents. It’s also important to provide thorough training for employees who operate these machines so they understand how to use them safely.

Don’t let these commonly overlooked hazards go unnoticed in your warehouse. Check for them and take action to address any issues immediately. These proactive measures can prevent serious accidents and keep your warehouse running smoothly.

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