Where must I start?

I have a warehouse full of gear–in fact, full of stuff everywhere.

The aisles are full, the racks are overfull with pallets of gear–a lot might be redundant; most of the gear is simply sitting on the pallet with no strapping so if something is bumped, where do we stand from the point of Duty-of-care?

How often must I have my racking audited? What is the Australian Standard for racking? I heard there was an update a while ago...do I have to worry about the update? My racking was installed over twenty years ago.

Our team has just visited a major mining operation to conduct a warehouse review. This checklist can be used to keep your warehouse in suitable condition by implementing internal guidelines for staff to follow.

WAREHOUSE SELF-APPRAISAL CHECKLIST

Your Warehouse Operators / Staff--PPE

1. Is there a PPE issue register? (If applicable)

2. Have you considered your PPE? Is it up to the task required?

3. Do you have the correct PPE when handling Dangerous Goods?

4. Is your storage of PPE appropriate to keep your items safe until use?

Building / Warehouse Facility

1. Have you considered your ventilation in the warehouse?

2. Is your lighting in your warehouse meeting your requirements?

3. Is the external lighting of your warehouse meeting your requirements when operating at night or providing enough security lighting?

4. Are work areas clean and free of debris/rubbish?

5. Are warehouse aisles clear of obstructions?

6. Are all your internal safety signs in serviceable condition? e.g. readable, no fading etc.

7. Are all your external safety signage in serviceable condition? e.g. reflective, no fading etc.

8. Electrical compliance up to date?

Racking and Storage

1. Are pallets, pallet racking and shelving in good condition? (Look out for loose boards on your pallets)

2. Are materials properly stacked and not leaning off the edges of the racking? Not double or triple stacked.

3. Are your cages or timber collars safety restrained to pallets?

4. Do your racking frames have guards/bump rails?

5. Does your racking have correct labelling/signage which is readable? Including Safe Work Loads.

6. Do your pallets have 6 inch leader-boards for safety under-rails and pallet racking compatibility?

7. Are all pallets, cages and bins on your racking, compatible with the racking?

8. Are all goods correctly restrained? Consider quick release strapping options.

9. Are there any rusting or corrosion issues? Consider heat shrink plastics and desiccants.

Traffic Management & Vehicles

1. Is there a traffic management plan?

2. Is there clear segregation of pedestrian traffic and mobile equipment? Consider barricading, safety gates, line marking and signage.

3. Are there sufficient vehicle parking bays and barriers?

4. Do you have a forklift pre-start checklist?

5. Are all walkways demarcated and signed correctly? Walkway designation is part of segregation of mobile equipment and pedestrians.

Emergency Response

1. Do you have a clearly displayed Emergency Response Plan? Including 000 and local emergency services numbers.

2. Are there clear paths leading to exit doors?

3. Are all exits clearly identified?

4. Do you have a fire management plan? Check sprinkler system, fire hoses, fire hydrants, smoke detectors etc.

5. Are fire extinguishers easily accessible, fully charged and their locations designated?

6. Do you have a First Aid Kit? Serviced, accessible and adequate.

Warehouse Materials Handling

1. Are all your Trolleys & Pallet Jacks fully functional and safe for operation?

2. Are all your Ladders serviced and compliant?

3. Are all your Strapping Tools serviced and in good working condition?

4. Are all general warehouse hand tools in working order and has there been appropriate user induction/training carried out?

Dangerous Goods Storage

1. Are flammable and combustible materials stored appropriately?

2. Are hazardous materials properly stored according to SDS requirements?

3. Are hazardous material racks labelled with material’s identification -labels should be clear and visible.

The checklist BELOW can be used to perform an audit on the general safety of the warehouse and its operation. By answering yes or no, you will be able to know what needs are to be addressed and give you a better idea on how these needs could be met. Don't neglect your safety. Omni-tuff your warehouse today!

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