Your warehouse needs to always have the right balance of productivity and safety, and you should never compromise on the latter in order to achieve marginal gains on the former. It can be a dangerous environment if the correct safety procedures aren’t followed, especially when operating forklift trucks.
It’s important to create a safety conscious warehouse environment, in order to minimise the risk of injuries or accidents. The safer the working environment is the more productive forklift operators and workers will be.
Even if you think you’ve got safety covered, there will always be room to improve. So, with this in mind we wanted to go through some tips on how you can make your warehouse as safe as possible
Make use of floor tape
Keeping pedestrians safe from any vehicles such as forklifts in your warehouse is of course a main priority, as this will help to avoid dangerous collisions. You don’t have to spend loads to implement safe routes and traffic lanes into your warehouse, instead you can simply use floor tape to mark out certain areas. Not only will the tape keep pedestrians out of harm’s way by clearly highlight the paths that forklifts can take, but it can be quickly changed to suit a new warehouse layout.
Put up guardrails
Installing guardrails is an absolute necessity when it comes to complying with safety standards, especially if forklift trucks and other vehicles are in operation in the warehouse. Operators will have to slow down their vehicle, and be forced to concentrate more on corners when guardrails have been correctly placed. This applies to any corners, ramps, and areas where manoeuvring space maybe tight.
Use bright clothing
It’s highly likely that your are using hi-visibility vests and hard hats where required in your warehouse, as these play a pivotal role in safety standards. The next time you order more uniforms or PPE, make sure you choose the brightest colour options available instead of going for the standard. The brighter the clothing the better you will ensure that your staff can been seen at all times.
Keep areas clear and clean
Debris, waste and clutter in the aisles and other areas of your warehouse can quickly become a potentially dangerous hazard. Loose materials can lead to workers slipping, cause fire risks, distract forklift operators, and could even cause collisions. Making sure that any areas and aisles in the warehouse are completely clear and clean is a safety priority. It can be easily done and maintained with good cooperation between coworkers and managers.
Use safety signage
Using safety signs is a legal requirement in the majority of warehouses. Any signs used need to display as much information as possible to alert any workers to possible dangers. Wherever there is an area of risk in the warehouse, signage should be placed, but it’s important not to use too many signs, as they could become a distraction and the most important messages could get lost.
Keep the warehouse well lit
Lighting is another key aspect of safety, especially because a warehouse can tend to be filled with gloomy corners and dark aisles. If visibility is poor thanks to low quality lighting then things will quickly become hazardous for both pedestrian workers and forklift operators. Always use high quality lighting to ensure the whole warehouse is properly illuminated. If you’re concerned about energy costs, then you could use LED lighting.
Hold safety meetings
As a final note, make sure that you always conduct safety meetings when necessary in order to remind your workers to stay safe, and to inform them of any possible new risks or changes to their warehouse environment. Reinforcing your workers with the message that health and safety should be at the forefront of any operations will go a long way.