What are the OSHA Requirements for a Warehouse?
Regardless of what type of products or materials you are storing in your warehouses or storage facility, it is imperative that you understand Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requirements and implement safety measures to reduce the risk of accidents or even fatalities at your company. The potential hazards in these environments are plentiful, ranging from musculoskeletal disorders due to improper lifting to physical harm due to being struck by a machine or falling items.
To fully understand OSHA requirements, visit the United States Department of Labor website by clicking here. If you already have a warehouse in operation, take time to assess your physical space and worker protocols to ensure you are meeting or exceeding those standards.
If you are just starting to build out a warehouse or storage facility – or you want to update your current space – our team at Lynch Material Handling can help you design storage solutions for your inventory that meet OSHA standards. Here are just a few of the potential hazards to consider when designing or assessing your space:
Slips, trips and falls. Your space needs to have clear, solid, clean pathways for employees to easily maneuver in as they load and unload inventory. Any drop-offs that are 4 feet or higher should have protective barriers to reduce the risk of falls. All workers should wear head protection in hazardous areas and be fully trained to work in these environments. Dockboards should be designed to prevent equipment from falling off the edges.
Storage. All shelving, racks and other storage devices should be inspected regularly and include guards and railings to prevent collapse. Inventory should be stored in such a way as to prevent the risk of sliding/falling. The warehouse and the storage areas should also be well-ventilated.
Automation. Some storage solutions provide automated processes to make inventory retrieval faster and easier. Workers should be fully trained on safety measures surrounding the use of these machines.
Musculoskeletal disorders. Employees should be trained on the proper, ergonomic ways to maneuver inventory. This is to prevent sprains, strains, pain, etc.
Lockout/tagout procedures. Ensure that equipment is isolated from an energy source (and therefore inoperative) when any worker is providing maintenance procedures.
There are many other rules surrounding safety in regard to hazardous chemicals, forklifts, electrical hazards, emergency planning and more. In addition, beyond training workers on safety measures, they should know the best ways to work safely in both hot and cold environments and they need periodic rest breaks to minimize stress and fatigue.
To learn more about OSHA-compliant storage solutions, contact us at 303-466-2317 or click here to schedule a free consultation and receive a quote.