Work Safely in a Warehouse

Work Safely in a Warehouse
Work Safely in a Warehouse
Publisher: The Centre for Occupational Safety,
Private Service Sector Group
Text: Marko Vuorinen, Päivi Rauramo, Tuija Laukkarinen
Working group: Erika Kähärä, Tuija Laukkarinen, Päivi Rauramo,
Juha Teivaala, Joonas Tuomivaara
Layout: Pen&Pen Ltd
Photographs: Päivi Lamberg, Sari Mattila, Sami Kulju,
3T Ratkaisut Ltd, Hexaplan Ltd: cover, pp 8 and 18
Printing house: Next Print Ltd
1. edition 2015
ISBN 978-951-810-576-6 (paperback)
ISBN 978-951-810-577-3 (pdf)
Contents
Introduction........................................... 3
Working environment and work habits .... 4
Rules, instructions and risk taking..... 4
Good housekeeping........................... 5
Handling loads .................................. 6
Manual handling and lifting .............. 7
Lifting aids and equipment................ 8
Proper lifting technique:.................... 9
Mechanical lifting ........................... 10
Lifting and moving personnel.......... 11
Suitability and condition
of forklifts and other machinery ..... 11
Personal Protective Equipment
(PPE) and work wear....................... 12
Fire safety and emergency
preparedness................................... 13
2     The Centre for Occupational Safety
Loading, health and work ability ........ 14
Physical strain ................................. 14
Temperature.................................... 14
Repetitive work .............................. 16
Breaks and energy intake................. 16
Work postures and movements....... 17
Standing work.................................. 19
Sedentary work................................ 20
Stress management.......................... 21
Well-functioning working
community and atmosphere............ 22
Working alone.................................. 23
Revision................................................ 24
Introduction
This publication is intended to support the induction and work guidance of an employee in a retailer
warehouse.
A safe and healthy workplace
benefits everyone. It means the staff
feels well and work flows smoothly.
Occupational Health and Safety
work means cooperation around
safety and health issues and concerns everyone in the workplace.
Supervisors carry the financial and
operational responsibility for safety
and health in the workplace. Each
employee is obliged to take reasonable care of their own and their
colleagues’ health and safety and to
inform the supervisor and the OHS
representative about the defects
and deficiencies causing hazards in
the workplace. Induction and work
guidance play an important part in
ensuring safety at work.
Induction means all the actions
taken to familiarise a new employee
with the work place, its customs and
people as well as the job itself and
the expectations relating to it.
Work guidance includes everything relating to performing the
job itself, such as the task itself, the
parts and stages of the task as well
as the knowledge and competence
required by the job.
Task: Do you know the main
safety risks at your workplace and
how they are reduced? Have you
been inducted on safe ways to
work?
The Centre for Occupational Safety    3
Working environment and work habits
Rules, instructions
and risk taking
Based on accident statistics alone,
warehouse work is risky work. It is
the employer’s duty to draw instructions and rules for, for example, internal traffic and the use of personal
protective equipment (PPE). It is your
duty as an employee to follow those
instructions carefully – provided that
you know them. If a rule or instruction feels improper or ill-suited to the
job, discuss it with your supervisor
and suggest changes. Not following
the instructions is not the right course
of action – besides, it is against the Occupational Safety and Health Act (18§).
There may be several reasons for
taking a risk: not recognizing the
risk, believing in good luck time
after time, or succumbing to factors competing with safety. These
factors include convenience, rush,
deep-rooted wrong practise, etc.
You should work to recognize these
competing factors in your own way
of working and then aim to remove
them. You should aim to strengthen
the motivational factors leading to
the desired behaviour (eg. safe way
of working). For example, ask your
supervisor for better-suited or more
appropriate protective gloves when
you notice that the ones you have
are not good enough for the job.
Sometimes changing a deep-rooted
4     The Centre for Occupational Safety
Clear written instructions are often
needed to ensure safe behaviour.
wrong behaviour might take a good
while of consciously doing the thing
differently. You might, for example,
make it a habit to replace an empty
pallet in its assigned place right
away when you notice it leaning on
a shelf – quite soon you will do it
without thinking.
General rules and instructions for
warehouse work:
• Operate a forklift or aerial work
platform only if you are licensed
to do so and have been inducted
on how to do it.
• Obey traffic signs and use designated routes to drive and walk in
the warehouse.
• When driving a forklift, wear a
seatbelt (if there is one). Also,
keep the cabin door shut when
driving a forklift.
• Use all the tools and machines as
instructed, including their safety
devices.
• Always wear the appropriate protective equipment and use the
proper tools.
• Do your own part to make sure
•
that customers do not use tools or
machinery that can cause hazards
or move around in unsafe areas.
When starting conveyors or other
machinery make sure no-one is
in the operating area. Make sure
you know where the emergency
switch is. When you need to clear
a jam, disconnect the machine
from the power source before
attempting to do it or call for
maintenance and make sure the
machine is tagged out of use until
it has been serviced.
Task: Find out where the rules
and instructions are in your workplace.
• Clear the forklift cabin from all
•
•
Good housekeeping
Disorder and untidiness cause many
accidents, material damages and fires
as well as make the place less pleasant to work in. Good order means
that there is an assigned place for everything and that items are replaced in
their place after use.
You can do your share to maintain
order and tidiness:
• Don’t leave items or the forklift in intersections or their vicinity or along
aisles – not even for a short while.
• Discard wrapping and packing
plastics after removing them.
•
•
extra items (sticker sheets, tape
rolls, etc) at the latest at the end
of your shift.
Keep exits, the vicinity of electric
switchboards, first aid and fire safety
areas and stairwells clear of clutter.
Clean spilled materials right away
if it can be done safely – if not,
isolate the area and notify the appropriate person.
Remove snow, ice and dirt from
pallets and other such units before bringing them indoors.
Keep the break room tidy: throw
used paper cups in the bin, put
magazines on the shelves, wipe
coffee stains off the table, etc.
Task: Learn about the recycling
principles in your workplace.
Find out what the assigned places
are for the tools and machinery
you use.
The Centre for Occupational Safety    5
Handling loads
Many of the warehouse accidents
happen when handling loads; moving, lifting, unloading or loading. You
can do all this safely if you use the
STOP
THINK
OBSERVE
right methods and devices. It is always essential to concentrate on the
task at hand.
Before doing something, stop and
think ahead and prepare for the task:
IDENTIFY
RISKS
REDUCE
RISKS
START
Stay alert and focus on the task at hand
From 3T Results Ltd Learning Multimedia on “The Human Risk Factor”
(in Finnish)
When you pile loads for example
by stacking boxes on a pallet, follow
these steps and assess:
• if the stack will stand when moving it by the forklift or when lifting is onto a shelf
• if the stack can be loaded onto
a truck in such a way that it can
also be unloaded safely
• if the load is supposed to be movable by a pallet jack.
The main idea is to place the
heaviest items on the bottom. Consider also the packing material – for
example, a collapsing cardboard
box can make the whole stack collapse. When necessary, use shelves
in roll containers and do not exceed
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the maximum carrying capacity of
the roll container. You may need
to secure the load by strapping or
wrapping it. The load should be low
enough so you can see over the load
when moving the container and
so that also unloading can be done
safely.
Manual handling and lifting
Manual lifting and moving of items
pose a safety risk and may cause
for example back injuries. A falling
load may cause an accident or the
person carrying the load may lose
his/her balance and fall or trip. Lifting wrong (eg. jerking) may cause
a permanent injury. Repetitive or
constant lifting leads to fatigue and
increases the accident risk. Besides
the weight of the load also individual features and the working conditions influence the total strain and
the size of the risk. The relationship
between the demand and the indi-
vidual’s capacity affects how safe
the lift is.
Loading as such poses no risk to
the back. It becomes risky when the
load is heavy and the physical condition of the worker is weak. Working
in the warehouse does not improve
your physical condition, you should
take care of your fitness and condition on your own outside work.
NB!
• Do not attempt to lift more than
you can. Get help!
• Stay in good shape.
• Inform your supervisor about
every accident and risky situation.
When lifting or moving a heavy or a large item, move the load by shifting
your weight to protect your back. Turn your feet forward with one foot slightly
ahead of the other, this way your spine will be in a good position. The further
the load is from your body, the greater the accident risk and harmful loading.
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When possible, place heavy items
that need to be moved manually at
the waist height and light items at
higher and lower levels. The heaviest items should be placed about 50
cm’s above ground. Slippery and
uneven surface is an increased strain
and risk factor.
Wide and low ramps ease the
transport of loads.
NB!
• Avoid carrying heavy loads in the
stairs.
• Use ramps whenever possible.
• If the pallet is stored high up,
lower it down for handling items
on it.
Did you know?
• Work should be organised so that
•
•
•
you can avoid manual lifting and
use powered equipment instead.
Workers should be provided with
appropriate aids for lifting and
material handling.
Workers should use all available
tools and make the tasks less loading and lighter.
In order to reduce or remove risk
factors, work stations must be organised so that the physical strain
remains reasonable compared to
the worker’s capacity.
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Lifting aids and
equipment
Using aids and equipment reduces the
physical strain, the risk of strain injuries and the accident risk. The equipment should be suited for the task and
to the worker. Make use of the available aids. Belt and roller conveyors and
other conveyors help with moving
items. Other such aids are different
forklifts and electrically operated or
manual lifting jacks and trolleys.
Notice that it is safer to push than
to pull.
•
Proper lifting technique:
•
•
• Check the weight, the balance
•
•
•
and the content of the item.
Plan your route, the location and
the use of the lifting aids and consider doing the lifting together
with a colleague.
Plan the lift, prepare for it and
concentrate on it.
Activate your core muscles, get a
good grip of the load, turn your
•
feet forward and slide the item
close to your body.
Avoid twisting and bending while
lifting.
Don’t yank on the object or jerk
upright.
Lift with your legs.
When removing items from
shelves that are above shoulder
height, first bring the load down to
your chest and then bring it down.
Task: Find out what kind of aids
and devices there are in your
workplace to help you with manual lifting. How could you utilise
them more?
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Mechanical lifting
Always follow all the instructions in
your workplace concerning mechanical lifting and load handling. Bear in
mind the following principles:
• Only drive the forklift if you can
see in the direction you are driving
and can see all the other traffic. If
necessary, lower the load, drive in
reverse and stop at intersections.
• Lifting a load onto a shelf or from
the shelf:
−− drive into the loading position
and only lift or lower the load
when the forklift is in complete standstill (a forklift can
tip over easily when the load
is elevated)
−− start the lift carefully to assess
whether the load is stable
−− lower the load onto its place,
don’t slide it or push it with
the tips of the forks
−− look back before reversing,
lower the forks and only then
back up from the shelf
−− never raise a load over other
workers.
• Do not climb on shelves. Use a
stable step ladder or a separate or
forklift compatible personnel lift.
Extension ladders must not be
used at all for getting items from
shelves.
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• When loading or unloading from
•
•
•
dock to truck or container,
1.make sure the truck or container doesn’t move (chock
the wheels)
2.make sure the dock plate is
secured and
3.make sure the floors can support the combined weight of
the forklift and the load.
When operating the forklift on a
ramp, the load should always be
on the uphill side of the ramp.
Drive forward going up the ramp.
Drive backward going down the
ramp.Travel straight up or down.
When travelling with or without a
load on the forks, keep the forks approximately 10–20 cm off the floor.
Only exit the forklift after it has
come a complete standstill. Do
not jump down.
Working areas should be separated from the forklift traffic. This
is, however, not always feasible. For
example, when wrapping a roll container or pallet in the dispatch areas,
you might have to work amidst forklifts. Be aware of the risks connected to this and constantly observe
your surroundings. You may also
suggest your supervisor to appoint
a more suited place for the task. Pay
particular attention if you have to
operate a machine in the customer
areas. Customers are not aware of
the risks related to your work. You
may also isolate the working area
or work in the customer areas after
opening hours.
Task: Learn to interpret and
understand the sign on pallet
shelves.
Lifting and moving personnel
You should only lift personnel by
lifts designed for that purpose (aerial
work platforms, scissor lifts, vertical personnel lifts). These devices
must be safety inspected annually
and marked properly for personnel
lifting. You must have a minimum
of one year experience operating
such a lift before lifting personnel
on it. This means you must be at
least 19 years old. Also, the person
being lifted must be at least 18. Before attempting the lift, make sure
you cause no danger to yourself or
anybody else. If necessary, isolate
the area from other traffic. (Decree
403/2008, Chapters 3 and 3a, 25§).
You mustn’t transport another
person in the forklift cabin unless
there is an extra seat in the cabin.
Also, forklift forks must not be used
for transporting personnel, not even
on pallets. This applies to manual
jacks as well.
Task: Make sure you know the
instructions in your workplace
concerning lifting personnel.
Suitability and condition of
forklifts and other machinery
Only use machinery and devices that
are in good working order and suited for the job. When starting to use
a device, consider the weight, size
and shape of the load, also how high
you have to lift it and if the environment poses limitations (e.g. aisle
width). The load you are handling
may require using some type of accessories (slings, chains, booms), fork
extensions, drum grippers, booms
for reels, carpet poles, etc. Make
sure the accessories are compatible
with the forklift or machine.
Do not use machines, devices or
lifting aids that are not in good condition or lack safety equipment. Report,
The Centre for Occupational Safety    11
tag and remove defective forklifts from
service until they have been repaired
and notify your supervisor.
It is the employer’s responsibility to organise the maintenance
and repairs of the machinery. However, you should also carry out daily
checks before operating the machine (e.g. forklift):
• make sure the cables and chains are
intact and that there are no spills
• check the tires and air pressure
• make sure there are no visible
fractures
• make sure the machine is tidy
enough (consider fire safety)
• make sure the controls and other
functionalities are in proper working order – test them!
After your shift, park the machine
in an appropriate place and leave it
in good condition. Remove all trash
(sticker sheets, tape rolls, wrapping
material, coffee cups, etc).
The employer is advised to listen to the opinions of the personnel before acquiring machinery and
devices. You can tell your supervisor
what you think of the current devices and if necessary, suggest bettersuited solutions.
Task: Find out what accessories
are needed in working with a
forklift in your workplace.
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Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and work wear
A worker must wear the personal
protective equipment and working
clothes provided by the employer
for a particular job (OSH Act 20§). If
you have a problem with the suitability of the PPE or work wear, discuss it with your supervisor.
The appropriate PPE and work
wear are assigned based on the tasks.
Typically, in retailers’ warehouses,
protective shoes, gloves and reflective vest (or other work wear ensuring visibility) are needed. When
necessary, also the following will be
used: hearing protection (consider
also impulse noise from collapsing
and stacking roll containers), goggles
(glass crushing), respiratory protection (dust, bacteria, chemicals), hard
hat and clothes appropriate for the
season or different temperatures.
The obligation to wear PPE also
applies to subcontractors and truck
drivers who need to move around in
the warehouse environment. If you
notice negligence, please point it out.
Task: Find out what tasks require
the use of PPE and where the PPE
can be found.
Fire safety and emergency
preparedness
Warehouses always have fire hazards. Defective electrical equipment,
forklift battery and engine defects,
chemicals and smoking are the
most common causes of fires but
you should also recognise the possible risk of arson. Pallets and stored
goods are fuel for fire.
You can do your part in reducing
the fire hazard and helping the rescue work. Good housekeeping plays
an important role in this:
• keep trash and other flammable
material out of the machinery and
equipment and their vicinity
• do not store items along the walls;
fire spreads quickly through voids,
roof structures and attic spaces
• obey the fire and safety instructions around the forklift recharging stations
• if you smoke, only do it designated areas and make sure you
discard the butts in proper containers
• if the bin has a lid, make sure you
close it after use.
Storage instructions for fireworks.
damage, notify your supervisor.
Obey instructions on how to handle,
package and store chemicals and
study the safety regulations of EX
and ATEX classified spaces.
Tasks: Make sure you know
where the emergency exits are:
can you see the green exit sign
from where you work? If you
handle chemicals, learn the safety
instructions.
Never prevent fire doors from
closing (by wedging them open)
even for a short while. Make sure
you do not damage fire detectors
by forklifts or loads. If you suspect
The Centre for Occupational Safety    13
Loading, health and work ability
Physical strain
Temperature
Typical loading factors in warehouses are lifting and moving of
loads, fixed and awkward postures,
repetitive work as well as some environment related factors, such as
temperature, draft, noise and air quality. Harmful loading can, however,
be prevented and reduced in many
ways. Reasonable, steady pace of
work helps. Rushing exposes you to
accidents!
Our thermal balance is affected by
the environment and the clothing
and how loading the work is. Environmental factors affecting the body
temperature are:
• air temperature
• radiant heat
• wind / air movement
• humidity.
Warehouse work can generally
be classified as moderately strenuous work and the recommended
temperature for that kind of work is
19–23 degrees Celsius. Temperature
that significantly deviates from that
is a loading factor and affects workers’ performance adversely, leading
to more mistakes and lessened productivity.
The more strenuous the work
and the hotter the environment,
the higher the physical loading. It
is therefore very important to take
care of the fluid and electrolyte (salt)
balance. Working in hot environments entails adequate breaks, fluids
and skin protection. Heat exposure
can be diminished by improving air
conditioning and ventilation, by local
cooling systems, fans or shades. It
is advisable to turn off all heat generating machinery when not in use.
14     The Centre for Occupational Safety
When the temperature is high:
• drink plenty
• eat healthily
• take breaks
• use cooling methods appropriate
for you task. Heat exposure can
be lowered by fans and air conditioners, draft, or by taking a cool
shower.
Outdoors work is performed in
many warehouses, and storage freezers are an indoors cold working area.
Going back and forth between a
warm and a cold working area puts
an extra burden on the body. Work
is defined “cold work” if it is performed in temperatures below +15
degrees Celsius. In practise, coldinduced health problems occur in
people who work in temperatures
below +10 degrees Celsius. “Cold
work” entails that the worker has a
sensation of cold. Besides temperature, these sensations are caused by
wind, humidity, cold liquids and cold
surfaces and platforms.
Cold is known to impair one’s
performance and to increase the
loading. Good physical condition improves the tolerance of cold because
fit muscles generate more heat and
their blood circulation is better.
Prevent cold hazards:
• Keep doors shut.
• Stay dry (including your feet).
• Wear layered clothing.
• Warm-up before starting the actual work.
If you work in irregular temperatures, contact your occupational
health care for instructions and recommendations on breaks, protective
clothing and hazard prevention.
The Centre for Occupational Safety    15
Repetitive work
Repetitive work means work where
similar, short tasks are performed
repeatedly. In repetitive work, work
cycles resemble each other in their
duration, use of force and movement.
According to the exact definition, repetitive work is such that one phase
lasts less than 30 seconds or that
more than half of the work phase is
spent repeating the same movement,
regardless of the length of the phase.
The difference between repetitive
and non-repetitive work is quite theoretical. Also tasks that include longer
work phases or more versatile movement may cause upper limb pain.
16     The Centre for Occupational Safety
In the warehouse, for example
loading and unloading goods and
forklift driving may classify as repetitive work.
Simultaneous repetition and excessive use of force cause a multiplied risk.
Breaks and energy intake
Breaks lessen the physical loading of
work. Taking breaks is particularly
important in jobs that include constant repetition, lifting and carrying.
Static muscle exertion pauses during
breaks and that enables the muscles
to recover.
Regular break-time exercise, done
on your own or instructed, is an effective and inexpensive way to prevent musculoskeletal problems.
Physically strenuous work requires sufficient energy intake. Eat
well and time your meals right and
you will have energy to work the
entire shift.
Tips for recovery:
• Take several short breaks instead
•
of one long one. Eat healthy
snacks.
Make it a regular habit to stretch
your muscles for a few minutes
every once in a while.
Work postures and
movements
It is critical that the workstation arrangements and design and the use
of machinery, equipment and tools
make it possible for you to work in
a good posture, to change positions
and postures and to move around
freely. You shouldn’t have to bend
over or twist to reach the workstation, nor reach excessively or sustain
arm extension.
Use both hands when shelving or
picking items or lifting loads. That
way you can keep your wrists in a
natural position and won’t need to
grip forcefully or hold wrists in extreme positions.
The Centre for Occupational Safety    17
Tool trolleys can be used as a moving workstation. A rubber mat provides good support if you have to
stand a lot.
Working at your workstation
Adjust the height of your workstation. If your task requires visual
precision, position the task close and
above elbow height. If your task requires moving your hands, position
the task below elbow height.
Large or heavy loads are best handled standing. Adjustable work surfaces are recommended in particular
for workstations where people of
different heights work or goods of
different sizes are handled.
18     The Centre for Occupational Safety
Manual work puts a burden on
the upper body joints. Prolonged,
unchanged posture – be it sitting or
standing – may cause static muscle
tension and lead to different symptoms and pains. Other joints and
lumbar discs may also get burdened.
Standing work
Warehouse jobs are often jobs that
include a lot of standing and moving, which burdens the lower body.
Standing still strains the muscles and
blood circulation considerably more
than walking or moving around.
Constant standing consumes energy
and you get tired.
Standing posture makes it easier
to reach further and also use force
better than in a sitting posture. It is
also easier to change postures and
move around more easily and freely
when standing.
For the best results, sit, stand and
walk and adjust your own postures.
Tips:
• Occasionally, sit down to work or
•
•
•
sit during breaks.
Use a sit-stand stool.
Leaning and finding support ease
the pressure on your back.
A rubber mat placed on the floor
will ease the pressure on the back
and lower body.
The Centre for Occupational Safety    19
Sedentary work
Some warehouse jobs are done sitting, eg. office work, goods receiving,
and handling of smaller items. Also,
driving a forklift can be sedentary
work. Sedentary work poses too little and too monotonous demands on
the body. Combined with standing
and moving around, sitting provides
much needed change.
Appropriate workstation, suitable
tools and furniture (such as adjustable desk and chair) are particularly
important in sedentary work.
Adjust your workstation to fit you:
Desk:
• adjust the height
• shoulders relaxed and neck
straight
• elbows supported
• room for materials
Display:
• optimal distance
• straight in front of you, below eye
level
Chair
• height, feet on the floor or on a
foot rest
• back rest provides lumbar support
• arm rests if needed
Mouse and keyboard
• same level, near each other
• alternate using them
• use an ergonomic mouse
Foot space
• feet on the floor or on a foot rest
• no electrical wiring in the foot
space
Breaks
• even good ergonomics will not
prevent injuries if you don’t take
frequent breaks.
20     The Centre for Occupational Safety
Task:
Make sure your workstation complies with the recommendations
above.
Stress management
Typical challenges in warehouse
work include rush, constant state of
alertness required by internal traffic,
non-functioning machinery for example in voice activated picking, and
maintaining competence to use new
and constantly developing systems.
Recovery is essential for managing stress. If you don’t have enough
opportunities to recover from work,
this will lead to fatigue and lapsing
alertness. And this in turn increases
accident risk. Stress symptoms and
effects of stress are different on different people.
Learn to recognise harmful stress
in time. The symptoms could be:
• impaired performance
• increased mistakes
• aches and pains
• concentration and memory problems
• sleeping problems
• irritability, conflicts
• increased smoking and alcohol
consumption.
Warehouse work is often shift
work, with occasional night shifts. The
Working Hours Act defines night work
as work that is performed between
11 pm and 6 am. Night work is both
physically and mentally more loading
than regular day work.There are considerable individual differences as to
how people react to shift work.
Prevent harmful stress:
• recognise the symptoms early
• discuss stress inducing matters
with your supervisor
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• embrace the challenges provided
•
•
•
•
•
•
by your work. Make suggestions
to develop your job description.
Occupational health care services
can help you assess your work
load
get enough sleep
take care of your social contacts
don’t think about work in your
free time
lead active free time (social contacts, hobbies)
relax in your preferred way; listening to music, reading, walking in
the nature.
Well-functioning working
community and atmosphere
22     The Centre for Occupational Safety
Everyone has the right to be treated
properly and respectfully at work.
Do your part to maintain a positive
atmosphere in your workplace.
Conflicts need to be solved
promptly and problems solved before they become personalized. Occupational Safety and Health Act
prohibits harassment and inappropriate treatment of other workers in
the workplace.This includes harassment and threatening behaviour by
customers as well.
Inappropriate treatment means
objectionable or disturbing behaviour. Harassment and inappropriate
behaviour may mean for example
bullying or psychological abuse,
including oppression, insulting comments, shunning/excluding or namecalling.
The following do not constitute
inappropriate treatment:
• conflicts arising from work related decisions or interpretations
• handling of task or work related
problems among the working
community
• justified disciplinary actions
• referral to work ability assessment
after the performance-related
problems have been discussed
with the employee.
Inappropriate treatment may include discrimination based on colour, gender, age or opinion. Also,
unjustified removal of work tasks or
employment benefits and not granting benefits may constitute harassment.
Also, sexual harassment or abuse
count as inappropriate behaviour.
They can be physical or verbal. Insinuations, gestures, offensive pictures or rude remarks can all be just
as abusive as physical touching.
If you experience or observe
inappropriate behaviour or
harassment:
• make it known to the person har-
•
assing you that you find their behaviour inappropriate and if this
does not help, ask the employer
to intervene
if needed, ask your Occupational
Health and Safety Representative
or shop steward or a colleague to
accompany you to the meeting
where the issue is handled.
Working alone
If a person works alone, the employer is obliged, considering the nature
of the work, the circumstances and
the location of the work, to arrange
an opportunity for the employee to
stay in contact with the employer
and other employees. The employer
must also ensure the means for calling for help to the person working
alone. Working alone can be considered a hazard factor in itself. It is
quite common that in smaller working communities workers work at
least some part of the day alone or
without visual contact to their colleagues.
Task:
Find out if your workplace has
guidelines for the situations of
harassment or violence.
If the situation doesn’t improve,
notify your supervisor.
Violence or threat of violence
requires preventive measures and
sufficient safety measures. In threatening or danger situations, always
follow the given safety instructions.
The Centre for Occupational Safety    23
Revision
• Make sure you have received thor•
•
•
•
•
•
ough induction.
Familiarise yourself with:
−− OHS policy in your workplace
−− risk assessment in your workplace
−− previous accidents and near
misses in your workplace
−− the safety plan of your workplace
In case of an accident, contact
your supervisor.
Plan the risky or heavy tasks in
advance.
Notify your supervisor of any defects and hazards you notice.
Assess the need for tools and auxiliary devices and accessories.
Learn and use the proper lifting
technique.
24     The Centre for Occupational Safety
• Take breaks.
• Stay in shape and lead a healthy
•
•
•
•
•
•
life.
Eat regularly.
Learn about your occupational
health care plan.
Notify your supervisor when you
are sick.
Intoxicants are to be kept away
from work: if you are drunk or
hung-over, you endanger your
own and your colleagues’ safety; if
you suspect a colleague of being
drunk, discuss it with him/her.
Take initiative to improve your
workplace safety.
Keep you first aid skills up-to-date.
The Centre for Occupational Safety, tel. +358 9 616 261, www.ttk.fi
Work Safely in a Warehouse
A safe and healthy workplace benefits everyone. It means the staff
feels well and work flows smoothly.
Induction and work guidance play
an important part in ensuring safety
at work.This publication is intended
to support the induction and work
guidance of employees in retailers’
warehouses.
Better work