Loading docks are among the busiest hubs of activity for facilities such as distribution centers, warehouses, industrial spaces, and manufacturing facilities, owing to the high volume of vehicles and employees that pass through them. As different items and materials are brought in and out of the facility, it is possible that they can become contaminated, which can result in occupational injuries. According to reports, loading docks are the scene of roughly one-quarter of all warehouse-related fatalities and injuries.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has established some loading dock standards to help prevent these accidents and ensure worker safety during operations. These standards include guidelines for the safe handling of mechanical tools, the safe storage of materials, clearance, housekeeping, and other aspects of loading dock operations. This information is critical for you to know as a facility owner or manager so that you can comply with the regulations.
Handling of materials
Here are three critical protective measures you may implement to make loading docks safe while adhering to all applicable OSHA rack safety regulations.
Loading docks are often elevated 4 feet or more above the ground level in order to accommodate the placement of ramps, dock boards, and other bridging devices to efficiently transport commodities and shipments onto and off delivery trucks. Use of appropriate safety measures, such as visible barriers to increase awareness of the fall danger and avoid probable accidents, should be used when a pier is elevated somewhat less than 4 feet above the ground.
Because covered trailers are constructions, they often do not have any internal lighting installed. In some cases, loading and unloading must be done while there is insufficient light. Hazards that are normally not visible can be illuminated through the use of operating lights on forklifts and the activation of any accessible dock lights, therefore reducing the risk of accidents.
When dealing with the loading equipment, the employees must have the required expertise to deal with it safely. You can provide certification training to your employees so they know the most secure ways and processes for performing effectively. Most of the owners considered certification location California Riverside to make sure that the employees on the working site are capable of handling the equipment like a forklift.
Employees should always check the wheel chocks when loading and unloading trailers and ensure that automated vehicle restraints such as dock locks are in place before proceeding. This enables you to prevent the trailer from becoming separated from the loading dock. In the event that you are employing dock plates, always ensure that they are secure and capable of supporting the load.
Because the weight of lifting equipment entering and departing your trailer might cause it to move, it is critical to maintaining it for your safety. It is also critical that you understand how to operate the trailer’s secure front-end. Whenever your trailers are loaded alone, you may need to use trailer jacks to keep them from tipping over.
Injuries at loading docks are a common phenomenon. Complying with OSHA rack safety requirements and having the essential training so you can ensure the safety of your workers and visitors.