Risk assessment and investment minimises hazards
Port hazards can be more effectively managed with risk assessment and investment in specialist materials and equipment.
This is the message from retro-fit and structural anti-slip flooring surfaces supplier GripClad, which says the main hazards at ports include injuries from manual handling, moving vehicles and equipment and lifting operations, slips and trips, and falling from heights.
The risk of manual handling hazards can be reduced by investing in mechanical handling equipment, such as vehicle-mounted hydraulic hoists, portable roller conveyors and pallet trucks to minimise manual handling operations. GripClad advises educating workers on safe lifting techniques and encouraging frequent breaks during monotonous and repetitive tasks.
Injury from vehicles can be reduced by providing appropriate road signs and markings and separating vehicles from pedestrians, as far as reasonably practicable.
The risk of hazards associated with lifting operation can be reduced by keeping pedestrians away from lift operation areas and ensuring that all workers are trained in safe lifting procedures. Regularly inspecting equipment and attachments and performing regular maintenance to prevent breakdowns and failures is also recommended.
Ensuring that walkways and flooring are built from anti-slip flooring is a practical first step to reducing the risk of a slip or a trip. Weather and impact-resistant flooring and gangways are also built to be robust and low-maintenance. Well-lit walkways and corridors mean that tripping obstacles can be removed or avoided but these, alongside stairs, should be regularly inspected for damage and obstructions.
Any work taking place at heights should be carefully organised and work areas should be regularly inspected and risk assessed. Guardrails should be present wherever possible and edge protection used, such as nosing, to avoid wear and tear.
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