If you operate a business from a warehouse, then it’s imperative that you make it as safe a workspace as possible. By not doing so, due to the various hazards and dangers that are littered all around it, trouble could befall you and anybody else that enters it at any moment. One of your employees could get hurt or fall ill as a result of your negligence, for instance. For them, such devastation has the potential to be life-changing, and you could be charged with serious misconduct as a result.
To keep your warehouse safe for all those that use and enter it, whether they do so daily or only every so often, you must put the following four pieces of advice into practice.
1. Ensure safety equipment is worn and used at all times
Whenever anybody enters your warehouse, they are to use and wear the appropriate safety equipment for the duration of their stay. You have a duty of care to these people, whether they are employees of yours, contractors, delivery people, or just general guests to your workplace, so you must ensure that they abide by the safety rules that are in place.
What safety equipment you ask guests to your warehouse to wear and use throughout their time depends entirely on the specific dangers posed in the area. If things are liable to fall from overhead, for instance, then you should ensure that everybody wears a hardhat at all times. Similarly, if your warehouse is full of dust or other small particles that could potentially cause damage to the eyes, you should make sure proper eyewear is worn.
Again, you must ensure that safety equipment is worn and used at all times. Forget this all-important task of yours, and who knows what terrible things may happen.
2. Eliminate all potential hazards
Requesting everybody to wear and use safety equipment during their stay in your warehouse is important, but it doesn’t rule out the risk of dangers rearing their ugly heads entirely. To further lessen the likelihood of danger arising, you also have to do your utmost best to eliminate all potential hazards before they get a chance to manifest into something more serious. From top to bottom, you have to scale your warehouse to ensure that everything about it as safe as can be.
Starting at the very bottom, you should ensure that your warehouse’s industrial flooring is not in any way a safety risk. If it is concrete that you work upon, then it is imperative that you protect it with epoxy concrete sealer. By doing so, you rule out the following potential dangers including:
- The floor turning slick and slippy due to the water that it absorbs.
- Bacteria and other pathogens growing due to the humidity.
- The creation of fine dust – thanks to foot and vehicular scuffing.
3. Keep Hazardous Zones Clearly Labeled
There will be areas in your warehouse that are significantly more hazardous than others — these particular areas need to be clearly labeled and signposted at all times and all costs.
The easiest way to showcase the fact that a zone is too dangerous to enter without supervision is to cordon it off using either tape or paint on the floor. This kind of highlighting is universal, especially if you use yellow tape or paint, so you wouldn’t have to worry about language barriers putting any overseas visitors to your warehouse in danger.
4. Make sure your staff are trained and re-trained
Ensuring that all of your members of staff are educated with regards to the safety practices that are in place in your warehouse is one of your most important tasks. In this instance, it is your job to provide your employees with training when they first join your ranks, and to then provide them with a re-training session after a certain amount of time has passed to remind them of what is expected of them. In this training, you should cover everything from your warehouse’s fire safety procedure to what constitutes as being a proper lifting technique.
By taking the above advice and ensuring that every one of your employees is aware of the dangers that surround them at all times, your warehouse will become a far safer working environment. Just make sure that your bid to shore up your workplace isn’t something you do once and then never again — your warehouse is littered with ongoing hazards, which means your task of quelling them is ongoing as well.