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Pallet Winter Safety Checks

21 Dec 2015

The run-up to Christmas is a particularly busy period for distribution companies and one that will produce a heavy demand for both wooden and plastic pallets. In order to reduce delays and ensure that your business operates efficiently and smoothly throughout the festive period, it’s useful to put in place pre­winter safety checks. This will ensure that all your wooden pallets are safe to use and will help to keep your employees safe through the darker working hours.

Winter Difficulties

The bad and cold weather can result in a higher number of accidents at work, especially those involving trips, slips and falls. There can also be a greater risk of vehicle accidents, electric shocks and injuries due to the cold, such as hypothermia and frostbite. Companies need to understand the dangers that are posed by the darker days as well, with a lack of natural light during working hours a potential risk for employees dealing with wooden and plastic pallets.

Pallet Safety Checks

Pallets are a vital component of the distribution sector and enable you to deliver goods to your customers as efficiently as possible. However, damaged or broken pallets, particularly wooden versions, can be one of the main causes of delays. Implementing winter safety checks in advance can improve levels of operational efficiency and increase safety across the business. It’s imperative that safety checks are carried out before the business becomes too busy. This way any repairs or replacements can be made before they affect efficiency levels. Following these initial checks, companies should carry them out on a daily basis to increase safety levels. These checks can be carried out quickly and simply and should be looking for any defects or areas that could affect the safe use of the pallets. For instance, with wooden pallets you should be checking for water damage, protruding nails, splinters, missing slates or any other damage.

Keeping Employees Safe

When employees are working with plastic or wooden pallets during the winter, it’s important to ensure that they are kept safe at all times. This should include the use of high­visibility and waterproof clothing, including jackets and trousers, suitable footwear and head protection. Insulated gloves will help workers to retain their body heat and protect fingers from the effects of frostbite. It’s also essential that the areas they are operating in are well lit to reduce the risk of an accident occurring. Where handling and lifting machinery is in use, these should be fitted with lights and reflective stickers so that workers can easily see them coming. The last thing that you need as a distribution business over the Christmas period is to have disruptions caused by a lack of pallets or accidents in the workplace. Spending time on these safety checks will save you time, money and inconvenience later, which could have a detrimental impact on the business.

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