Warehouse jobs are a fulfilling way to earn a living. Whether you’re a dispatcher, packer or a machine operator, working with your hands and being able to physically see the fruits of your labor at the end of your shift feels great.
This line of work is safe in nature, but injuries do happen when proper precautions aren’t followed. If you’re looking for machine operator jobs in Lehigh Valley or any other type of warehouse opportunity, it’s important to choose an employer that values safety.
You also need to do your part to stay safe on the job by being informed. In 2016, there were 16 fatalities in the warehousing and storage industry, and five recorded cases of injury and illness per 100 full-time workers, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Find out what types of injuries are most widespread in a warehouse setting.
Four Most Common Warehouse Injuries
Stacking items is essential for warehouse storage, but this practice can be dangerous if done improperly, because products can fall and cause serious damage. Careful attention must be paid to both the weight and the shape of the load, to ensure it arrives at its shelf safely and is stowed properly.
Slips, Trips and Falls
Warehouses are busy places with people rushing in every direction, so slips, trips and falls can happen easily if work areas aren’t properly maintained. Walkways must be clear at all times, spills should be cleaned up immediately and trash — i.e., boxes and packing supplies — should be promptly removed.
Ergonomic Sprains and Strains
Many warehouse jobs require significant lifting, so necessary precautions must be taken to protect the body. Wearing appropriate footwear will help, along with utilizing proper lifting techniques. Each person the floor should know their limits and never push past them. Unlike some other injuries, sprains and strains often require significant recovery time, if the issue isn’t permanent in nature.
Improper Use of Equipment
It’s not uncommon for workers in a warehouse — or any other industry — to use equipment in a manner beyond its intended purpose. While everyone knows this shouldn’t happen, people tend to look the other way, but doing so can be deadly.
For example, in 2017, a warehouse worker succumbed to fatal injuries after falling seven feet from a wooden pallet elevated by a forklift, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Association. While moving inventory on steel storage racks, he followed a dangerous procedure that had become common at the warehouse. His fatal injury was a direct result of using the equipment in a manner it wasn’t designed to support.
Ready to find a new warehouse job in the Lehigh Valley?
HTSS, Inc. wants to help you find a temporary, temp-to-hire or direct hire opportunity that meets your needs. Contact us today to get started!