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There are various safety practices for warehouse workers to be aware of to avoid injury, or possibly even death.

It is crucial for warehouse worker safety for workers to be aware of best practices for their safety and health.

Employers should also be aware of the best protocols to follow to provide a safe work environment for their employees.

In North Carolina, employers must follow the federal Occupational Safety and Health Act, or OSHA, standards  to the letter. 

The list below will detail crucial warehouse worker tips for safety and health. These practices are key to both employers and employees.

Slip-and-Fall Prevention Practices

The first safety practice to avoid warehouse worker injuries is to keep floors and walkways clean and free of safety hazards.

This can help prevent a slip-and-fall injury. For example, tiles must be flat on the floor with no broken or loose tiles.

There should also not be any frayed or torn seams in carpeted areas. Another critical practice is to ensure that any items are placed out of the walkways.

Training, Authorization, and Instruction by Employers in North Carolina

The second practice for warehouse worker safety is to not operate any equipment without proper training, instruction, or authorization.

Additionally, although it sounds obvious, employers must train employees in a language they know well enough to be trained in it.

That way, employees can know how to keep themselves safe.

Personal Protective Equipment

The third practice warehouse workers can follow for their safety is to use personal protective equipment, or PPE, if it is required for their job.

North Carolina again has followed federal rules for PPE. Potential PPE for workers overall includes safety glasses, gloves, face shields, ear plugs, hardhats, and boots.

The employer ought to determine the appropriate PPE for warehouse worker safety depending upon the conditions of the specific workplace.

The PPE ought to be properly designed and created for the specific work being done.

Emergency Procedures

Fourth, before an emergency, warehouse workers should follow specific safety practices.

Employers need to provide all possible emergency exits and procedures for evacuation in advance. An emergency exit or fire extinguisher should never be blocked by an employee.

Warehouse operations in particular must have a lockout or tag program in place.

In addition, employees should be aware of where to gather if there is severe weather or a fire alarm.

There might be differing meeting areas depending on the nature of the emergency. 

Harmful or Dangerous Substances

The fifth important tip to keep in mind is that employers need to prevent workers from being exposed to dangerous substances or chemicals to prevent warehouse worker injuries.

This can include substances, such as asbestos, or chemicals, such as solvents, that are at harmful levels. 

If your employer does not ensure that there is not any asbestos in the warehouse, they could be subjecting their employees to injuries that can last just a short while or grow into a long-term problem.

Asbestos can be within flooring, drywall, and many more areas.

If you are an employee and believe that there are asbestos-containing materials, ensure that you do not touch or try to remove the material you think might contain asbestos on your own.

Doing so could potentially cause long-term damage to your lungs. It is the responsibility of the employer to ensure no asbestos or any other dangerous substance or chemical is present.

Correct Ergonomics

Improper ergonomics are often overlooked but can also cause injury to a warehouse worker if not corrected.

There are several ways to improve the ergonomics in a warehouse environment to reduce the risk of injury.

First, there has to be enough lighting for the job.

Second, if the weight of the load being lifted is above the threshold that would endanger the employee’s safety, the employee should ask for assistance.

Lastly, a warehouse worker should use the correct equipment if it is provided for heavier lifting.

How Mehta & McConnell, PLLC Can Help

If you are a warehouse worker and have suffered an injury due to improper safety practices, you need a team of experienced attorneys on your side.

The attorneys at Mehta & McConnell, PLLC have over 30 years of combined legal experience to assist you with your case.

Our practice areas vary widely and include workplace injuries, lost wages, occupational diseases, and more.

If you are dealing with a workplace injury in North Carolina, contact us today to schedule a free consultation or call us at 980-294-4074.

Author Photo

Jason McConnell

Jason McConnell is the managing attorney of Mehta & McConnell Injury Lawyers, a Charlotte, North Carolina Workers’ Compensation law firm. In his free time he enjoys playing golf, cooking, traveling and following the UNC Tar Heels and Carolina Panthers.

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