Running a warehouse is no easy task. You likely have a large number of responsibilities, from managing employees to making sure equipment is up to date. Creating a space that is efficient and secure is something that you should strive for, so it is necessary that you are aware of industry standards. When it comes to loading docks specifically, there are a number of safety concerns to keep in mind.
What is a Loading Dock?
A loading dock refers to the areas around your warehouse where delivery drivers park and unload equipment or shipments. According to the 2018 Bureau of Transportation Statistics, around 6,000 employee injuries resulted annually in regards to loading docks. To avoid any employee accidents or injuries, you need to make sure that your docks are up to industry standards at all times.
Keep it Clean
One of the simplest ways to ensure your company’s loading dock is safe is to make sure it is kept clean at all times. Avoid allowing water or oil to collect at the dock, as this could result in employees slipping or issues with forklift traction. Make sure your company has a regular process of keeping these docks clear of debris and other obstacles that could get in the way.
OSHA Barrier Standards
Including safety barriers is not only important but is necessary according to OSHA standard 29 CFR 1910.28(b)(1)(i). A dock with a drop of four feet or more must be guarded with a barrier, whether it be a chain or bar barrier. These barriers are essential to making sure forklifts and employees are not at risk of falling off the dock.
With forklifts frequenting the dock to unload equipment from delivery trucks, it is essential that your warehouse has systems in place to keep these forklifts and their drivers safe. Make sure your dock is well-lit and features yellow lines at the edge of the dock. Another thing to make sure of is that the truck that is either unloading or being loaded is flush to the dock, not allowing any gaps where a forklift could fall or get stuck on.
Industry standards are there for a reason. It is important to keep employees safe and ensure that your warehouse does not become a safety risk in order to keep employees happy and you from getting sued. Make sure your warehouse is compliant with OSHA standards. If you’re unsure about something, make sure to give us a call today and we can help you to create a workspace that is both safe and secure. Call us today at (251) 309-5264 and let us help you create the warehouse of your dreams!