OSHA Warehouse Safety Checklist

Preparing for your next OSHA Warehouse Safety Inspection can be a nerve-wracking experience if you are unsure of what is required. At Plastic Pallet Pros, we have been there before and want to help your inspection process go as smoothly as possible. With that goal in mind, we have compiled the following Warehouse Safety Checklist for your team to follow along with as you prepare for your OSHA inspection. We hope it will help both you and your team feel more confident about your upcoming inspection, not to mention the overall well-being of your facility and your employees. Keep scrolling to start the checklist.

There are four main components of the OSHA inspection: general safety, material handling, hazard communication, and forklift safety. 

General Safety

  • Are exposed and open loading dock doors or areas that employees could fall from chained, roped off, or blocked in some way?
  • Are the floor and aisles clear of all clutter, including cords, hoses, spills, and other hazards?
  • Are there adequate rest periods for employees who are performing physical work? If not, fatigue levels will increase the risk of accident or sub-par work.
  • Are new employees trained in ergonomic and task-specific training to ensure they remain safe while working? Include training on working in both cold and hot environments.
  • Is the facility well-ventilated and are lockout procedures in place?

Safety with Material Handling

  • Are aisles, loading docks, or passageways appropriately marked and sufficiently clear for mechanical handling equipment?
  • Are loose or unboxed materials properly stacked to limit the risk of falling hazards?
  • Are bags, containers, and bundles stored in stacked, blocked, or interlocked formations in limited height to prevent sliding or collapse?
  • Are storage areas kept free from materials which could lead to tripping, fire, or pest infestations?
  • Is excessive vegetation removed from building entrances, work, or traffic areas?
  • Are covers or guardrails provided to protect your personnel from hazards of stair openings in floors, meter, equipment pits, or similar hazards?
  • Do personnel use proper lifting techniques?
  • Are elevators and hoists for lifting materials properly used with safe clearances, appropriate signals, and directional warning signs?

Hazard Communication Safety

  • Are all hazardous materials properly labeled, including identity, manufacturer’s name and address, and any necessary hazard warnings?
  • Does your facility have a written program covering hazard determination, including Material Safety Data Sheets, labeling, and training?
  • Is there a system to check that each incoming chemical is accompanied by an MSDS?
  • Are all employees trained in hazard communication standards, any chemical hazards they may be exposed to, how to read and understand an MSDS, and on what precautions they should take to prevent exposure?
  • Is that employee training documented?
  • Are all outside contractors given a complete list of chemical products, hazards, and precautions?
  • Are procedures in place to maintain and evaluate the effectiveness of the current program?
  • Do employees use the proper personal protective equipment (PPE) when handling chemicals?
  • Are chemicals stored only according to the manufacturer’s recommendations and pertinent fire codes?

Forklift Safety

  • Do forklifts meet design and construction requirements for your industry?
  • Do you have written approval from manufacturers for any modifications which may impact the capacity and safety of the vehicle?
  • Have capacity, operation, and maintenance instruction tags changed to specify any modifications or additions to the vehicle? Are those markings placed in an easily viewable location, and legible?
  • Are those forklifts used in hazardous location approved / marked for that use?
  • Is battery charging conducted in designated areas?
  • Does your facility have proper locations provided for flushing and neutralizing spilled electrolytes?
  • Are there facilities for fire extinguishing, protecting charging stations, or ventilating battery fumes?
  • Do you have conveyors or overhead hoists for handling batteries?
  • Are forklifts always positioned properly before workers begin to change batteries?
  • Are precautions taken to prevent smoking or other open flames/electric arcs in battery charging areas?
  • Are tools and other metallic objects kept away from uncovered batteries?
  • Are the levels of noxious gases and fumes below acceptable levels?
  • Have forklift operators completed the necessary training and evaluation from a properly certified individual?
  • Do operators comply with all traffic regulations, including permitted plant speed limits and clear lines of site?
  • Has refresher training and evaluation been conducted when operators are observed handling vehicles in accidents or unsafe circumstances, or if the driver is operating a new vehicle?
  • Has each operator’s performance been evaluated at least once every three years?
  • When forklifts are left unattended, are the proper storage procedures implemented?
  • Do operators maintain a safe distance from edge ramps or platforms?
  • Is there sufficient headroom for the forklift and operator under overhead installations – including sprinkler systems, lighting, or others?
  • Are overhead guards provided (and in good condition) to protect forklift operators from falling objects?
  • Are dock boards properly secured when loading or unloading from dock to truck?
  • Are all loads stable, safely arranged, and compliant with the rated capacity of the truck?
  • Are replacement parts equivalent in terms of safety with original parts?
  • Are trucks examined for safety issues before being used and are unsafe trucks removed from service?

How Can Plastic Pallets Help You Achieve Many of These Guidelines?

Traditional wooden pallets come with a great deal of additional weight and liability when compared to plastic pallet alternatives. Due to their unique nature, plastic pallets have many benefits when it comes to handling efficiency. Not only will the lightweight help in loading, it could also reduce potential injuries.

Plastic Pallet Pros – Your Resource for All Things Shipping

At Plastic Pallet Pros, we strive to do more than supply you with high-quality pallet solutions for your business. We want to provide you with all the resources and information you need to run a successful business.

If there is any assistance our team can provide, please do not hesitate to reach out and contact our team today.