Warehouse Lifting and Handling – Comprehensive Guide
Whether you’re a warehouse manager, a logistics operator, or a forklift driver, proper lifting and handling of goods is a critical part of keeping your warehouse running efficiently. Unfortunately, accidents and injuries can not only be costly but also hurt morale and lead to absent workers. That’s why it’s essential to follow best warehouse lifting and handling practices.
In an HSE report “123 workers were killed in work-related accidents in 2021/22.”
This blog post provides a thorough overview of the most important guidelines and tips to help you keep your warehouse safe and productive. From understanding the hazards associated with warehouse lifting and handling to learning the best ways to move and store goods.
Overview of Hazards Associated with Warehouse Lifting and Handling
Warehouse lifting and handling hazards can be found at every step in the process. From picking the right items to lifting and carrying them to storing them correctly, there is ample opportunity to make mistakes and create hazards.
Let’s take a look at a few of the key areas where hazards can occur: –
Picking and Ordering Items
When picking items for a shipment, it’s important to take note of their weight. Heavy items can cause back and shoulder injuries when picked incorrectly, whereas lighter items can be easily tossed around. Therefore, when ordering items, it’s important to consider not only the weight but also the dimensions of the items.
Loading and Unloading Trucks
Loading and unloading trucks manually is a task that creates significant hazards in warehouses.
Storing heavy or bulky items incorrectly can not only cause damage to the warehouse but also cause injury to workers who have to move these items later.
Proper Lifting Techniques
Pick the right item
The first and most important step in lifting is to pick the right item. Picking the right item will take into account several factors, including weight, size, and the overall condition of the item.
Pick the right location.
When you pick an item, you also need to pick a location to store it. Selecting a spot to store an item close to the work area and on level ground will help workers lift and move the item more easily. Consider the item’s dimensions when deciding where to store it. Load the item correctly.
When you pick up an item, ensure your hands are close together and your forearms parallel to the ground. This will help you keep a better posture and put less pressure on your back when lifting.
Load the item close to your body
Keep it close to your body when loading an item so you can use your legs and core muscles to lift it. Keep your knees bent and your back straight during the lifting process.
Load with both hands
Once you’ve got the item close to your body, use both hands to lift the item. Use the hand on your dominant side to grab the item first, and then use the hand on your nondominant side to pull the item in against your body.
Load as close to the end of the item as possible
When loading items, it’s important to load them as close to the end of the item as possible. Loading items in the middle or towards the front of a pallet can put added pressure on your back.
Load with the right posture
While lifting items, make sure you’re lifting with the right posture. Maintaining the correct posture during the lifting process will help reduce the risk of injury.
Keep your knees bent.
On lifting an item, make sure you’re keeping your knees bent. If you try lifting with straight legs, you’ll put more pressure on your back.
Keep your back straight.
Maintaining a straight back while lifting will help reduce the pressure placed on your back. Make sure your knees are bent, your feet are as close to the item as possible, and your back is straight.
Keep your core tight.
Maintaining a tight core will help protect your back from injury. Make sure your knees are bent, your back is straight, and your shoulders are pulled back.
Tips for Safe Handling of Goods
Use the right equipment.
When handling different types of goods, it’s important to use the right equipment for the job. In addition, using the right equipment will help protect workers from injury and help keep the warehouse environment damage-free.
Move heavy items as a team.
One of the best ways to protect your workers from injury and keep the warehouse environment damage-free is to move heavy items as a team.
Use proper lifting techniques.
When handling heavy items, ensure you’re using proper lifting techniques and the right equipment, such as pallet jacks, sack trucks and forklifts where possible.
Using Forklifts and Other Heavy Machinery
Choose the right vehicle or equipment for the job.
When picking equipment or a vehicle for a particular job, choosing the right one is important. Using the wrong vehicle, either too small or too large for the job, can create hazards in the warehouse lifting and handling.
Pick the right location.
When choosing the right vehicle or equipment, you must pick the right location. It’s important to select a location close to the work area so workers can easily move the vehicle from one spot to another.
Use safety equipment
Finally, ensure you’re using safety equipment while operating heavy machinery in the warehouse. Not only will this help protect you while operating the machinery, but it will also protect your workers from injury.
Benefits of Using the Right Tools and Equipment
One of the biggest benefits of using the right tools and equipment is safety. Using the right equipment will help reduce the risk of accidents and injuries in your warehouse.
Using the right equipment will also help improve workflow in your warehouse lifting and handling process. Using the right tools will help workers complete tasks more quickly and efficiently.
Safe Use of Hoists and Cranes
Choose the right equipment.
When choosing hoists and cranes for your warehouse lifting and handling, choosing the right equipment for the job is important. Using the wrong equipment will not only be inefficient, but it could also create hazards in the warehouse.
Choose the right location.
Once you’ve picked the right equipment for the job, you must choose the right location for the equipment. Selecting a location close to the work area will help keep workers close to their tasks while reducing the risk of injury.
Choose the right method of operation.
Once you’ve picked the right equipment and location, you also need to choose the right method of operation.
Accidents in the workplace can be avoided with the right training and care. Here at 3JC LTD, we are happy to advise on the best equipment to help staff work in a safe warehouse environment. So be sure to drop us an email or give us a call.