North Carolina warehouses are bustling hubs of activity, and the unsung heroes of these operations are the warehouse workers. These dedicated individuals play a key role in keeping the supply chain running smoothly, but their job is not without risks.
Warehouse workers across the state and nation face numerous on-the-job risks and hazards.
Slips, trips and falls
Spilled liquids, loose debris and uneven floors can lead to slips, trips and falls. These accidents often cause sprained ankles, broken bones and head injuries. Promptly cleaning up spills, marking wet areas and providing anti-slip footwear to workers helps mitigate these risks.
The physical demands of warehouse work take a toll on the body. Heavy lifting and long hours can lead to overexertion injuries, such as strained muscles and back problems. Proper training on lifting techniques and the use of ergonomic equipment helps reduce overexertion-related injury risks. So, too, does maintaining a reasonable pace of work. Research shows that employees who work for one major warehouse employer known for its high pace of work are twice as likely as employees who work for other warehouse employers to experience a serious on-the-job injury.
Repetitive strain injuries
Performing the same motions repeatedly, such as scanning barcodes or packing boxes, may lead to repetitive strain injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome or tendonitis. About 9% of Americans report having experienced a repetitive strain injury within the past three months. Using ergonomic tools and taking regular breaks helps reduce the risk of repetitive strain injuries.
By implementing proper safety measures, providing adequate training and maintaining a culture of vigilance, employers reduce injury risks in warehouses. They also allow warehouse professionals to perform their basic job duties without assuming unnecessary risk.