OSHA Compliance Checklist: A Crash Course in Warehouse Safety Compliance
All employers, no matter the size of their business, have a duty to maintain safe working conditions and a safe environment for each and every one of their employees. In order to ensure employers are held to these standards, there are specific OSHA (Occupational Safety & Health Administration) requirements.
To help get you started on verifying if your business promotes safe practices and a safe environment, here are some items to include on your OSHA compliance checklist:
- Hazard Communications
- Emergency Action Plan
- Fire Safety
- Emergency Exits/Exit Routes
- Working/Walking Surfaces
- Medical and First Aid
- Machine Guarding
- Electrical Hazards
- PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)
- Work, Health, and Working Uniforms
- Respiratory Protection
- Hearing Protection
- Confined Spaces
- Blood/Bodily Fluids
- Powered Industrial Trucks/Forklifts
Please keep in mind, this list is not complete but a general starting point. OSHA requirements can and do vary based on the type of business, its industry, and its market segment. It is the responsibility of business owners to review all current OSHA requirements to verify their businesses are compliant.
Next, a Survey and Audit
Once you have your checklist and have verified you have covered all of the necessary OSHA requirements for your business, you will want to do a survey and audit of your work environment and business. The purpose of the survey and audit is to identify any additional potential workplace hazards you may have overlooked.
For instance, what sort of training do you provide your employees before allowing them to operate a piece of equipment or machinery? You may have overlooked your specific training practices, some of which could be required by OSHA.
Then a Detailed Job Safety and Health Program
The next step to ensuring OSHA compliance is to develop a detailed job safety and health program. This program should include different types of job training, from on-the-job and instructional-based training to self-paced learning modules.
Proper training can help reduce risks of accidents as well as improve OSHA compliance in the workplace. Part of the training should include detailed steps to follow should an employee encounter a potentially hazardous situation, like discovering a piece of equipment is malfunctioning.
Additionally, you need to have OSHA posters prominently displayed where employees can view them easily. These posters inform employees about job safety and health. If you have employees who speak a different language, it is highly recommended to obtain posters in different languages and display them together in the same locations in your workplace.
You may also be required to keep accurate records of any injuries and illnesses that occur in the workplace. However, it is a good habit to develop since your records can help identify potential workplace hazards or other issues that need to be addressed.
Report Injuries and Deaths
Furthermore, OSHA requires employers to report any injuries and deaths that occur in the workplace. To help you ensure OSHA compliance, they offer an easy-to-use compliance assistance quick-start guide for various industries.1