For a Safer Warehouse, Consider Four Safety Truths
Distribution centers and warehouses nationwide get national press coverage for poor working conditions. Learn the four truths to keeping workers safe.
(Boonton, NJ, April 19, 2012) As tales of harsh working conditions in warehouses spread nationally, some have begun to describe distribution centers as the modern equivalent of coal mines, garment factories, and other paragons of unsafe and unpleasant workplaces.
An article in the April issue of Distribution Center Management looks at a number of recent examples of DCs in the news and in trouble with OSHA for safety and health violations. In addition the article provides "four safety truths" from workplace safety firm Predictive Solutions.
After examining data from a variety of employers, Predictive Solutions identified four universal truths for improving safety:
- Safety Truth 1: Inspections work. More inspections lead to a safer workplace. Make certain your safety program rewards high levels of inspections. If your accident rates seem high, the first step is to do more inspections.
- Safety Truth 2: Recruit inspectors from outside the safety function to conduct inspections. The more inspectors you have looking at safety, the fewer accidents you'll have. Getting managers out on the floor reaps rewards from not only improved safety but also productivity.
- Safety Truth 3: Too many "100 percent safe" inspections are bad news. Train for and reward the reporting of unsafe conditions. Your goal isn't to produce squeaky clean inspection reports. Your goal is to prevent accidents before they happen.
- Safety Truth 4: If you find unsafe conditions, fix them. Sounds obvious, but too often, inspectors report unsafe conditions that never get resolved.
More on keeping your workers safe, and the changes unions want to see are in the April issue of Distribution Center Management.
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For more than 40 years, Distribution Group publications have helped distribution center and warehouse managers increase productivity, cut costs, and meet increasing customer demands. Distribution Group publishes Distribution Center Management newsletter, books and reports, and a free e-newsletter.