How to Ensure Safety When Using Dock Levellers
Loading docks are a vital part of most industrial buildings or warehouses as they are the hubs for loading and unloading of goods. Forklifts and other material handling equipment are needed when moving the goods, especially for large packages and pallet loads. Aside from these, another type of equipment that provides a valuable service in daily operations is the loading dock leveller. It creates a level surface between the loading bay and the truck, ensuring safe and efficient loading or unloading.
Here are some pieces of advice on how you can ensure a safe working environment when using your loading dock leveller.
1. Choose the right leveller
The first thing that you need to do is to pick a type of dock leveller that will suit your operations best. You must understand your business’ operational specifications and requirements. Consider what type of vehicles you use and how often the dock leveller is utilised during normal days. It is also important that the leveller can support the weight of the materials as well as the handling equipment. By taking all of these factors into account, you should be able to narrow down the choices of leveller that will fit your needs. By having a leveller that is suitable to your operations, you can limit the amount of maintenance and safety risks that may occur.
2. Use Spotters, Chocks and Bumpers
Backing the truck to the loading dock can be an arduous task. To assist the driver in parking his vehicle, you can use a spotter to smoothly direct the load to its destination. Spotters can also reduce the risk of operators driving the forklift off the dock levellers.
Meanwhile, bumpers should be set up properly on the dock to soften the occasional impact caused by vehicles. These can protect the cargo from getting damaged and employees from getting hurt.
When parking delivery vehicles, there should always be chocks available for use. Wheel chocks are made of heavy materials that fit next to a vehicle’s tyres. They can prevent the movement of a vehicle during the loading or unloading process.
3. Maintain Your Dock Leveller
Having a well-maintained dock leveller can prevent accidents from happening. As such, you must keep the structure and pit of your leveller in good shape and make the necessary repairs as soon as possible.
Make sure you regularly check your dock leveller for any issues. The dock boards should always have a smooth and solid surface to be able to balance and support the weight of loads. For dock levellers that have mechanical lifts, it is important to have them serviced regularly to maintain their functionality.
A regular maintenance routine can minimise the chances of costly dock leveller repairs and can reduce work-related injuries.
4. Keep The Space Clear During Loading and Unloading
To ensure the safety of all employees, everyone must be at a safe distance during the loading and unloading of goods. The only people permitted near the load are the spotter and the operator. Having distractions may cause injuries so it is important to keep a calm and professional disposition during work. The area should also be clear of any slippery substances to avoid any untoward accidents.
TPS Gates & Doors is a family-run business that has given high standards of service for over 20 years. Our team of engineers can install, maintain and repair docking systems and loading bays. We also provide you a detailed report for your records. If you are looking to install or maintain loading bays, we would be very pleased to give you with a comprehensive quotation. Call us on 01594 840408 or fill out this contact form.