Trucks are an integral part of any warehouse, as they keep the flow of goods moving. Chances are, you have several employees who primarily work on the loading dock. These people meet with drivers upon arrival and facilitate the loading and unloading of the truck.
As one of the top warehouse temp agencies in Lehigh Valley, HTSS, Inc. knows truck loading safety is a very serious matter. If employees aren’t properly trained and/or fail to follow the rules, they can be very seriously injured.
OSHA Jurisdiction for Loading and Unloading
When a truck is traveling on a public highway, it’s under the jurisdiction of the Department of Transportation (DOT), but the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has the authority at sites visited by truckers to pick up and deliver loads. For example, when a truck is loaded or unloaded at retail locations, plants, marine terminals, warehouses and most other locations, it’s under OSHA’s domain.
It’s also important to know that forklift operators and terminal employees who load and unload trucks at all locations fall into OSHA’s jurisdiction.
Training Requirements for Loading and Unloading
If you think employees can just load and unload trucks without training, you are very mistaken. This type of heavy lifting requires very specific knowledge, so make sure your employees receive proper education before jumping in.
Training requirements vary by industry and tasks performed, as no two businesses require the exact same duties. Of course, employees handling loading at your warehouse probably use powered industrial trucks, and OSHA has very specific training requirements for these forklift operators. Even if the person operating the forklift isn’t a full-time employee — for example, a temporary worker — you’re still responsible for ensuring they’re equipped with the necessary training.
It’s always better to be safe than sorry, so make sure your workers have the knowledge and equipment needed to do their jobs the right way. Periodically check to make sure everyone is adhering to proper safety guidelines, because you can never be too careful when safety is on the line.
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