UPGRADE WAREHOUSE TRAFFIC SAFETY WITH VISUAL COMMUNICATION
BY GRAPHIC PRODUCTS STAFFminute read
There were 805 deaths and over 64,000 injuries among warehouse workers in 2021. That represents an over 20% increase from the previous year. Forklift collisions alone resulted in 78 work-related deaths and 7,290 nonfatal injuries involving days away from work in 2020. Violations involving powered industrial trucks (forklifts) are among the most common citations issued by OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Association).
Modern warehouses experience a wide variety of traffic ranging from forklifts and pedestrians to large tractor-trailer rigs, pickup trucks, and cars. It may even include bicycles, “gators,” and golf carts. With so many moving parts, traffic control is vital to a safe work environment.
3 Steps to a Safer Warehouse
Take these simple steps to improve traffic safety in your facility.
1. Establish Engineering Controls to separate heavy vehicles from lighter ones, and separate pedestrians from all types of vehicles.
2. Lay Out Administrative Rules and train your employees to eliminate exposure hazards during day-to-day operations.
3. Provide Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as high-visibility vests, to all workers involved in warehouse operations
Utilize Visual Communication
The best approach to warehouse traffic safety is the use of floor marking and safety signs. When it is not practical to keep pedestrians and vehicles in separate areas, floor and pavement marking directs movement within the warehouse such that everyone remains safe. Use floor marking products to identify hazardous areas, such as the edges of loading docks, and prevent costly accidents.
Take Safety to the Floor
Safe pathways for pedestrian and vehicular traffic are critical for day-to-day operation, especially in emergencies. The high number of deaths resulting from forklift collisions indicates that it is vital to mark traffic routes clearly. Effective floor marking must be easy to understand at a glance, so everyone can navigate safely.
Apply floor tape to:
- Distinguish separate lanes for vehicle and pedestrian traffic
- Identify intersections and blind spots around corners
- Highlight safe pathways to exits, stairwells, aisles, and emergency equipment, even in the dark
- Mark off designated areas used for forklift parking and re-charging
- Highlight the edges of loading docks to create a warning track for drivers
- Identify areas where hazardous materials are located or stored
- Warn about pedestrian and vehicle traffic lane intersections
- Keep traffic away from areas where there are overhead hazards
- Indicate safe clearances for making turns at ends of aisles
- Call out the edges of holes, depressions, or bumps in the floor
Use diverse colors of floor marking tape to control warehouse workflows and keep pedestrians separate from motorized traffic. Color-coded floor marking has the added benefit of effectively organizing a warehouse and improving productivity.
Find the Right Tape
Always have the right floor marking tape for the job. PathFinder provides all the following:
- Rigid™ aisle marking tape is designed to provide long life even in high-traffic locations
- TREAD™ anti-slip floor tapes prevent the most common workplace injury—slips and falls by adding traction entryways or stairs
- REFLECT™ high-visibility floor tapes and stick-on signs are ideal for any situation requiring increased visibility, including low-light conditions
- Glow-in-the-dark floor tapes highlight the way to safety exits in emergency power outage situations