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Top Tips For Loading Dock Safety

Loading docks seem fairly simple but require LOADS of loading dock safety. The dangers of the loading dock vary and are responsible for nearly a quarter of warehouse injury reports. Any forklift and loading dock gaps should be pursued with caution. The good news is the dangers of loading docks can be prevented with a little safety prevention.

Businesses and employees lose out on injury reports, as most warehouses incentivize workers to have low injury reports. By implementing training in loading dock precautions, both parties win. Businesses save money on injury claims and employees sometimes receive bonuses!

With the massive increase in e-commerce businesses like Amazon, the need for fast delivery is more than it ever has before. The pressure to speed up distribution is omnipresent. Peak shipping seasons are hard on everyone. Workers are expected to have quick breaks and work fast. Production can come to an immediate halt without following safety procedures.

Today, Singer Safety is touching on the top tips every loading dock should use to prevent injury reports at a warehouse. These important tips can be used for the loading dock and even in training. Having a general employee understanding of loading safety knowledge benefits everyone.

Five Top Loading Dock Safety Tips

  1. Mark All Walkways And Loading Entry With Painter’s Tape

Forklifts are the main cause of injuries in the loading dock area. To ensure the safety of everyone, clearly mark the loading dock entry in the warehouse and the loading bay.

  1. Utilize Every Loading Device On Loading Trucks

Loading devices need to be hooked on every loading truck when loading. Using loading dock devices ensures that the trailer will not separate from the loading area while packing. A large gap can cause falling when the loading dock device isn’t used. Prevent falling injuries by utilizing loading devices.

  1. Communicate Visual

Much like airplane loading docs, visual representations of go, stop, and directions signals should be used. Simple green and red light is useful and can easily be seen by drivers in the loading area. Verbal communication is great but visual communication must be added for full protection.

  1. Pad Sharp Edges On Loading Areas

Pad sharp edges on loading areas are a simple way to prevent any bruising, tripping, or scraps. Padding sharp edges in the loading dock are highly recommended to avoid warehouse injury reports.

  1. Keep It Tidy

Singer Safety highly recommends having a cleaning pre-work and post-work schedule if this practice isn’t already implemented in the workplace. A common hazard in the loading dock area is tripping and falling due to a variety of causes. This could be from joking around, weather changes, unpadded sharp edges, or slippery shoes.

What Is A Loading Dock Plate?

The loading dock plate is the plate that bridges the gap between the loading tricks and the bay. Loading plates are extremely useful for sliding large packages and for employee safety. Dock plates are similar to loading dock levelers. However, loading dock plates are made to be portable.

Loading dock plates are heavy-duty and should only be slid. Loading dock plates are made of aluminum. Whereas, dock levelers are permanent.

Loading Dock Plate Do’s and Don’ts

Loading Dock Do’s

Check Loading Plate Capacity

Loading plates can only hold so much. For everyone’s safety make sure the loading plate is not overweight. General knowledge of loading plate capacity should be discussed in employee training.

Secure All Movable Dock boards

Secure all movable dock boards by stepping on them until it’s even. Dock boards should always be in place before stepping onto them.

Always Slide Dock boards

It is not recommended to pick up dock boards. Slidingdockboards ensure the safety of employees. Dock boards are heavy-duty, it would be easy to smash ligaments and cause an injury report.

Wear Slip-proof Shoes

To avoid tripping and falling accidents with slip-proof shoes. Standard work boots or any hard-toe shoe is great!

Loading Dock Don’ts

Joke Around Near Loading Docks

Joking around near a high dock is not recommended. This may be one of the biggest causes of injury reports. Joking around along with not taking the job seriously causes so many preventable accidents. Supervisors should do a good job regulating this behavior.

Jump Down Off Docks

Be very cautious of jumping off the loading docks, especially if they’re high-level docks. Docks are dangerous to jump off of. Stepping down or sitting and sliding down are the preferable options.

Keep Truck Motors On

Do not keep the truck motors on while at the loading dock. Employees will be exposed to carbon monoxide poisoning. These causes of danger are the least likely but to be safe, turn off trucks.

Try To Pick Up Dock boards

To reiterate the dock board hazard, only slide dock boards. They shouldn’t be picked up at any point. This is a major cause to look out for with staff.

What Is A Loading Dock?

A loading dock or loading bay is the spot where loading trucks come in and out to load packages. You may have seen the long line of loading trucks at warehouses. The truck enters the loading dock to be packaged by workers. The loading dock can be the biggest hazard of the warehouse if not carefully protected.

The purpose of loading docks is to facilitate effective interaction with a specific type of vehicle. Loading trucks are hooked to the bay to reduce the risk of rolling. Loading devices are a loading dock safety must!

Loading Dock Safety Requirements

Loading docks have specific requirements in place for warehouses for safety by law. One of the biggest lawmakers for safety is OSHA. OSHA requires that loading trucks are equipped with front-end attachments. This is just as important as using loading plates. Loading plates close the gap between the loading dock and the loading truck. Loading devices ensure the loading plate will not slip.

The United States Department of Labor is another workplace safety federal lawmaker. Federal laws to protect worker safety are not only recommended but are finable if not followed correctly. Make sure your business and employees are federally lawful in your safety practices. At Singer Safety, it is our mission to help you create the best work environment possible!

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