Warehouse safety can take many forms, from proper training to providing the equipment your workers need to get the job done quickly and effectively.

What a lot of warehouse managers don’t consider, however, is the idea of letting the warehouse itself provide for additional safety. By modifying your warehouse with the proper safety equipment, you can provide a much safer (and more productive) environment for your staff, your inventory, and your equipment—all of which can pay off greatly in the long run. No matter what sort of inventory your warehouse stores, there’s several safety installations that will be right at home in your warehouse:

 

Fire extinguishers

These are likely required by law wherever your warehouse is located, but the sort of benefits a good sprinkler system can bring can’t be understated. Make sure your fire sprinklers are correctly placed throughout your warehouse at regular intervals, and perform frequent checks to make sure everything is working as it should. Additionally, installing open shelving like wire shelves can provide an extra safeguard in the event that the sprinklers need to be used, as they will allow for water to flow much more easily.

 

Guard rails

The purpose that warehouse guard rails can serve is three-fold: protecting your workers from falls or trips, protecting your inventory from tumbles or collisions, and helping to set up a flow of traffic. Particularly in elevated areas or high-traffic zones, guard rails can help maintain a constant flow of foot and vehicle traffic (which can be doubly important in areas with a lot of forklift action) and prevent unnecessary damage or injury due to accidents or carelessness.

 

Cable enclosures

Every warehouse, factory, or distribution center will have a lot of cables running to and fro in order to power everything the warehouse has installed. These cables can quickly become tripping hazards, or worse yet fire hazards if left out in the open. Make sure to practice proper cable management throughout the entire warehouse, and use rubber guard panels across areas where cables have to reach across the floor, particularly in high-traffic areas.

 

Proper ventilation

As you’ve probably encountered first-hand, warehouses can find themselves storing a wide variety of products, some of which could potentially cause a safety hazard if the fumes are allowed to leak out like cleaning products or industrial chemicals. Make sure the entire warehouse is properly ventilated, from openable windows to safety fans installed in areas with a high concentration of these products, as well as proper venting for heating and cooling throughout the entire warehouse to ensure all products are being stored at the right temperatures (and that extreme heat and cold aren’t affecting your workers as they try to go about their days).

 

Ergonomics

This one tends to elude most warehouse managers as it isn’t quite as ‘obvious’ as things like fire sprinklers, but ensuring proper ergonomics are used throughout the entire warehouse is critical to preventing injury and reducing strain on your workers. Make sure that all of your shelving and pallet racks are set up at the appropriate height to reduce wrist strain and promote proper lifting, provide ergonomic desks for all the office workers to help prevent strain or repetitive motion injuries, and in extreme cases provide weight belts and other forms of support to help when heavy lifting needs to be performed.

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