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12 Top Dock Leveler Safety Tips to Keep You Safe

by Ion Rotaru 02 Sep 2023 0 Comments

In warehouses all across the country, hundreds of accidents occur every year. Most of these happen at the loading dock, and are entirely preventable. So why aren't they prevented? Most times, it comes down to a lack of education. This is why in this article, we're taking a look at dock leveler safety. Keep reading to find out the top tips to keep yourself and those around you safe when operating a dock leveler.

Disclaimer: The information in this article is intended for general awareness and educational purposes only. We cannot guarantee that this information encompasses all possible safety precautions or scenarios. Always consult with a professional and refer to the manufacturer's guidelines when dealing with dock levelers or any other heavy machinery.

Dock leveler safety tips

Dock leveler safety tips

  1. Read the manufacturer's guidelines.
    All operators should get familiar with the manual before touching those controls. From safety procedures to troubleshooting tips, employees should be educated on the dock leveler in their warehouse.
  2. Stay clear when it's in motion.
    This is perhaps the most obvious tip, but it's worth repeating. Just as you wouldn't walk under a moving garage door, steer clear of dock levelers while they're moving.
  3. Always inspect before you operate.
    Think of it like checking the water temperature before diving in. Every time you're about to use a dock leveler, take a few moments to inspect its condition. Are there any visible damages? Loose parts? For instance, if you notice the lip mechanism isn't extending smoothly, it's time to get that checked.
  4. Keep it clean, folks.
    Just like you wouldn't cook in a messy kitchen, ensure your dock leveler area is clear of debris and obstacles. Imagine trying to position the leveler and there's a stray pallet blocking its way – that's a mishap waiting to happen.
  5. Display the right signage.
    The relevant operating and warning signs should be placed near the control box. Even better, post some signs on the wall to the left and/or right of the leveller at eye level. Clear visibility, clear safety.
  6. Training is the name of the game.
    Would you let someone without a license drive your car? Similarly, only trained personnel should operate dock levelers.
  7. Monitor the load capacity.
    If your dock leveler is rated for 15,000 lbs, don't try to put more than that on it. Always know its load capacity and ensure it's not exceeded. You wouldn't want the leveler to collapse under excessive weight.
  8. Beware of the edges.
    Be cautious about the dock's edge when the leveler isn't in use. Something as simple as losing your balance and falling over can cause serious harm. Safety barriers or visible markings can be a lifesaver here.
  9. Communication is key.
    Bad communication can lead to accidents. Always use clear signals or communication devices, especially when trucks are approaching or leaving the dock.
  10. Regular maintenance is a must.
    Like giving your car a regular oil change, dock leveler maintenance is just as important. This ensures everything's running smoothly and helps in identifying potential issues before they become major problems.
  11. Do not operate a damaged dock leveler.
    Think of it as not driving a car with a flat tire. If you spot any damage, halt operations immediately. Reach out to a trusted dock leveler repair and service company. It's always better to be safe than sorry.
  12. Understand the potential hazards.
    To understand how serious this is, everyone that operates or is around a dock leveler should know that there can be serious consequences if dock levelers are not operated according to the manufacturer guidelines. The following potential hazards can occur:
    - Crushing
    - Shearing
    - High-pressure fluid ejection
    - Loss of stability
    - Slip, trip, and fall
    - Electrical contact
    - Failure of energy supply
    - Control system hiccups

We hope these loading dock leveler safety tips have been useful to you. Remember to stay safe and keep an eye out for those around you.

WarehouseWiz is here for all your dock leveler needs

If you're in the market for a new dock leveler, look no further than WarehouseWiz. Our hydraulic dock levelers are made out of steel to endure frequent use and come fully loaded with brush seals and toe guards. Not only that but we also supply other types of dock levelers.

Not only that, but our levelers are all made in Canada, and considered some of the most high-quality yet affordable options on the market. Contact us and get a quote today!

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