Taking care of yourself on the road includes being safe when you reach your destination. Loading docks are a busy place and there are many potential hazards. Staying safe on the job is an important component of staying happy and healthy in the trucking industry.
Loading Dock Safety Tips
It’s very important to be mindful of your surroundings on a loading dock. Here’s a key to understanding loading dock hazards and how to prevent them:
Use Proper Lifting Techniques
When loading and unloading your vehicle, or just moving around small pieces of cargo, remember to lift with your knees to protect your back. Use a forklift or dolly to lift heavier loads, and never try to lift alone! This is especially important because long hours of sitting in a vehicle can make back problems worse. Protecting your back is protecting your future.
Look Out for Tripping Hazards
Many different types of loads come through a loading dock every day. The loading dock workers should be on the lookout for any hazards, but drivers should also look for: wet or oily floors, debris in the walkways, melted ice or rain, and cracked or broken flooring. If you are watching for these problems, you can catch them before they catch you.
Prevent Injuries by Staying Alert
Forklifts and other mechanical equipment can be helpful or dangerous depending on the conditions. The operators should always be alert, but accidents can happen. Be aware of your surroundings on the loading dock and move quickly when you hear a forklift coming. The same rules apply to your truck: make sure your truck and trailer wheels are choked before loading or unloading. Avoid inhaling carbon monoxide by turning off your motor when its pulled up to the loading dock to keep your fellow workers safe.