Safety in the workplace
26 Mar

Increasing safety and security

Warehouses are not inherently dangerous places but there can be some safety and security concerns relating to both employees and products.

For example, a warehouse may need to create a safe and protected area for the storage of secure or valuable goods. In this case, a simple solution would be to install a mesh Anchorwall steel partitioning system to create a protective barrier.  An anti-collapse system can also be created around racking. For added security, a perforated Anchorwall could alternatively be used.

Reduction of noise

Within some warehouses, noise levels can be generated that could cause hearing damage to employees. The Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005 require employers to prevent or reduce risks to health and safety from exposure to noise at work. So, in noisy warehouses, it is often necessary to manage the risks to employees’ hearing.

Common sources of noise within warehouses include mechanical handling equipment, radios, automated systems and specialised tools such as refrigeration equipment. Constant exposure to high levels of noise can not only be a health and safety hazard with regards to hearing damage, but can cause other problems such as disturbance, stress and communications interference.

A simple solution to reduce the noise within a warehouse is by partitioning off the source of the noise and segregating it from employees. For example, using Flexiwall to enclose a particular set of machinery, equipment or system; where employees do not need to be in the vicinity of and therefore protecting them from any excess noise and providing a separated, quieter area in which they can work.

Transmission of airborne sound is reduced when using Flexiwall and the acoustic range incorporates a specially designed combination of materials sandwiched together to offer up to 30dB(A) reduction of certain sound frequencies. Flexiwall industrial noise reduction partitions form a permanent but relocatable wall that can be moved to suit the needs of the warehouse.

Maintaining a reasonable workplace temperature

Like any other workplace, the temperature in warehouses should provide reasonable comfort for workers without the need of specialist clothing. Whilst there is no set temperature outlined for employers, the temperature should be “reasonable” and this is typically seen as at least 16°C, or 13°C for work that involves a lot of physical effort.

Warehouses can often find it difficult to maintain these temperatures, especially in food manufacturing industries. With specific storage temperatures to adhere to, employers can often find they are not only chilling food but the entire warehouse.

By enclosing the chilled food area away from the rest of the working warehouse, it is possible to achieve a comfortable temperature level for employees and also reduce the amount of energy needed to chill the products.

Flexiwall can again be used to enclose a specific area due to the heavy duty thermal options available. Flexiwall enables separate enclosures to operate at different temperatures, which is beneficial when requiring chilled storage. This means for example, that one area can operate at +3 degrees and another at ambient, which can often reach over +30 degrees in summer months.