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Workers' injuries in warehouses can be avoided

Warehouse workers in New Jersey all face similar hazards along with those unique to the facilities in which they work. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, about 20 percent of warehouse workers nationwide suffered workers' injuries in 2015, and a significant portion of those led to days off work. Safety advocates suggest employers create safety cultures in which employees are equipped with appropriate clothing and protective equipment and open communications to report and address safety concerns.

Further suggestions include the need to train employees to use proper lifting techniques because back injuries are common in this industry. Housekeeping also needs particular attention because slips, trips and falls are prevalent where spills are not immediately cleaned, walking surfaces are uneven or when random objects are allowed to remain in walkways. Newly mopped and waxed areas do much for cleanliness but could cause slip-and-fall accidents, so placement of warning notices in these areas is essential.

Forklifts bring an entirely separate set of safety hazards to warehouse workers. The operators must learn how to do a safety check before every shift, and only qualified operators must drive these dangerous vehicles. Overloading is to be avoided, along with unbalanced loads. Forklift drivers and pedestrians need to be aware of each other at all times. Forklift accidents typically result from defective equipment, operator negligence or obstructions due to out-of-place obstacles.

Victims of workers' injuries in New Jersey may be entitled to claim benefits from the workers' compensation insurance program. The help of an attorney who is experienced in handling benefits claims on behalf of injured workers can be of particular value. The insurance system typically provides benefits to cover the medical expenses and for lost wages that resulted from hospitalization and the need to recuperate.

Source: renoforklift.com, "5 Tips for Avoiding Warehouse Accidents", Accessed on Nov. 10, 2017

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