There are safety measures that are essential for legal compliance. And then there are safety measures enforced by individual companies because they are seen as applicable for their particular situation. These ‘local laws’ aim at better worker ergonomics, efficiency and productivity with less strain and fatigue. Basically they aim to be a safe and reliable way to get things done.
Some suggestions for any work environment with physical work and machinery.
- Floor marking tape. It is a considerable help to separate areas for machines (like forklifts) and areas for walking. Reflective conspicuity tape, dot c2, is ideal for this. But employees must know to comply with the safety lines.
- Guard rails are also useful for separating machine and personnel areas. These are especially good for driving lanes because they prevent people and vehicles from cutting corners.
- Bright Hi-visibility Clothing for employees increases visibility, so drivers are much less likely to hit a working employee. Look for en iso 20471 certification on Hi-Vis clothing.
- Make sure all aisles are uncluttered. Cluttered aisles reduce line of site visibility, which is risky. Cluttered aisles may also cause forklifts and vehicles to manoeuvre unpredictable directions, which is also risky.
- Make sure all items are stored in appropriate areas, i.e.: designated shelving or containers. This reduces clutter, which is unsafe. Avoid temporary storage of items. This is unsafe and requires more time and effort latter on.
- Good, clear lighting is essential. There is obviously more risk of accidents in dark conditions. But also try to avoid bright light sources, which can be distracting. Evenly spread, clear lighting is best.
- Non-slip mats are essential in oily, wet or slippery conditions.
- Cover cables, especially if they are being exposed to traffic.
- Ergonomics- If everything is within easy reach then there is less thoroughfare. Fewer people moving, so less chance of an accident.
- Safety lights and signs are often required by law. Always purchase a reflective traffic sign for designated areas, or the appropriate reflective road sign.
- Prevent unauthorized personal from entering the workplace. Anybody unfamiliar with safety procedure is a risk. And they will probably not be covered by insurance.