Despite its obvious importance, there are still many uncertainties as to what are the essential measures that the users of storage systems should observe to minimize the risk of mishaps in their daily operations. Protecting staff and ensuring the proper functioning of the warehouse should be the priorities of any logistics manager. In this article, we take a look at some of the primary keys to the proper administration of warehouse safety policy.
The safe warehouse
Safety in the warehouse means developing a set of recommendations and measures to ensure the optimal condition of the components involved in the day to day operations, and thus avoid risks to people, interruptions in service, or damage to the goods.
The interaction between operators and forklifts or other maintenance equipment is susceptible to accidents and damage to storage structures.
In order to ensure maximum protection and minimize any risk, there are two main points to consider: training and prevention.
Involving and motivating all company staff to work in the right direction in managing safety and health in their workplace should be one of the main objectives of the company’s management.
In this sense, the need for training is a fundamental preventive measure. Management must provide courses to workers in the facilities on the safe and effective use of the equipment and give safety manuals for each of the components used in the facility.
Warehouse shelves are designed to withstand expected loads, complying with government regulations regarding calculation and use. The vast majority of accidents are caused by the direct impacts of carrying equipment, especially on the outer struts of the racks. Depending on the force of the blow, the shelf may collapse at the moment, or remain standing for a while, but with less endurance. However, if any vital element, such as a strut, deteriorates and is not dealt with immediately, it can collapse due to a new impact or by a thrust forced onto other racking nearby.
For this reason, it is crucial that operators are adequately trained and knowledgeable about the proper use of the equipment and inform their managers of any damage that occurs on the shelves, even if there seems to be no damage.
Training is an investment for the future, not only from the point of view of human cost but also economically.
Risk assessment is the cornerstone of occupational accident prevention. If this step is not carried out, it won’t be very easy to identify and take appropriate action.
Correct management in this area necessarily passes through the observation of five steps:
- Identification of risks and endangered workers.
- Risk evaluation and prioritization of risks.
- Planning of the necessary preventive actions.
- Enactment of such measures.
- Monitoring and evaluation.
First of all, the warehouse owner must provide his workers with a completely safe facility, with the appropriate equipment, and in good condition.
In a warehouse, it is crucial to monitor not only the condition of the shelves and forklifts, but also that the lighting is sufficient, that the pallets are in good condition and can resist the load, that the work aisles are clean and tidy, etc.
With regard to shelves, they have been calculated based on specifications that the user provides to the manufacturer. Therefore, the distribution of the levels, profile models and resistance of the different components are the results of a very precise calculation that should also comply with government regulations.
Therefore, damage caused or changes in its distribution or use decrease the safety requirements considered in the design and reduce load capacity.
As for maintenance equipment, it is apparent that they deteriorate with use: the moving elements and wheels wear out, can lose liquids that increase the risk of slippage, etc. For replacement parts, contact www.rackingspares.co.uk.
Since this influences your behaviour, to work more safely, preventive maintenance is essential and should never use machines that are not in optimal condition.
The assembly of the shelves in the installation must be carried out by competent personnel in accordance with the specific design regulations, and according to the requirements supplied by the manufacturer.