Climate control in warehouses presents a greater challenge than climate control in office buildings. While the physical aspect of operating material handling equipment adds body warmth to some extent, cold weather reduces productivity and increases health risk for warehouse workers.
Train Employees to Prevent Cold Stress
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has no official regulations in place regarding cold weather conditions in the workplace. OSHA does recommend that employers take proactive steps to train about cold stress symptoms and appropriate first aid procedures.
In addition, you can institute policies to make the warehouse a more hospitable workplace during cold weather months:
– Make sure that employees are dressed for the weather and using personal protective equipment as needed.
– Have employees monitor each other for possible signs of cold stress and report problems to their supervisor.
– Provide warm break rooms and have plenty of warm, sweetened beverages on hand to ward off dehydration.
Cold-Proofing the Warehouse
No matter what temperature is maintained inside the warehouse, frequent opening of doors allows warm air to escape and be replaced by cold air. Here are steps you can take to minimize this effect:
– Strip doors allow easy in-and-out access while acting as a barrier against cold as well as dust, spray and noise.
– Temporary curtain walls insulate specific warehouse areas as needed and they’re easy to install and remove.
– High-speed doors, powered or manual, reduce the amount of exposure to the cold.
– Fans may sound counterintuitive, but they can actually circulate heated air for better distribution.
Put Safety First with Material Handling Equipment from DJ Products