Automated conveyor systems are designed to make order fulfillment a breeze. They let you pack more, ship more, and expedite and streamline order fulfillment to maximize productivity, all while reducing the need for labor in your operations. They allow you to quickly shift inventory to the right places within your space while protecting them from damage. As integral as they’ve become to order fulfillment and general warehouse operations, automated conveyor systems require strict adherence to safety protocols to preserve the efficacy of the process, as well as the safety of operating staff and nearby personnel.
The U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics has reported up to 9,000 injuries per year are the result of conveyor accidents. That’s a large number, especially when you consider that most, if not all, of the incidents, can be avoided. In order to maintain your productivity and, more importantly, the safety of your employees, warehouse personnel should adhere to the following essential safety tips:
Critical Conveyor System Safety Tips
Respect the System
Proper operation of your conveyor system is key to the safety of your personnel. This means refraining from climbing, sitting, standing, walking and riding on it, or touching it while in operation.
Turn OFF before Working ON
Make sure that all power to the system is cut before working on it. No maintenance should be performed, including opening a panel or guard, until you disconnect the power sources. It’s also important to block the incline on a gravity conveyor before starting any preventative maintenance or macro repair.
You’ve Got It Covered
Never operate your system without the approved safety guards. They’re there to keep inventory protected and employees safe. Although it may be easier to work without the interference of the guards, make sure to stress the importance of keeping them intact on the systems that are in use.
Know Your System
Only authorized and knowledgeable personnel should be operating and maintaining the conveyor systems. Make sure you know the location and function of stop/start controls. Employers should train workers about the controls, where they are, when to use them, and how to access them.
Keep A Record of Use
Do not modify or change any component of your system in ways not in accordance with maintenance or repair procedures. Approved and qualified staff should monitor system controls to ensure that no employee has misused or altered them in any way.
Employees can also protect themselves from accidents involving automated conveyor systems by keeping their hair, loose clothing, and body parts away from the system. It’s also important to ensure that all employees maintain an appropriate distance from the system away from operations.
OSHA conveyor standards indicate that conveyor systems should have a warning signal that makes a sound before the system starts. Personnel should also be trained on what the signal means and the risk of injury or accident if it’s ignored.
Let Apex Help Keep Your Employees Safe and Protected
Apex is committed to not only helping our clients identify and implement automated conveyor solutions for their warehouses, but we also partner with them to ensure that their system is operating safely and effectively. Contact our experienced and qualified team members today to find out what we can do for you and your business. We very much look forward to hearing from you.