Each year, a number of Minnesotans are seriously injured while working in warehouses. However, there are precautions employers can take to minimize the risk of warehouse accidents and injuries so that workers and visiting contractors are protected.

Business owners should conduct a site induction for any subcontractors or contractors who will perform work in their warehouses. They should explain all of the processes, take them on tours, point out potential hazards and be sure that they understand and follow the safety rules and guidelines. Warehouse owners should also make certain that they have guidelines in place that adhere to the safety regulations that have been promulgated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

An easy way to help to keep workers safe in warehouses is to keep the work area neat and tidy. Any debris should promptly be removed, and there should be regular cleaning schedules to prevent accidents. Items that are stored should be properly stacked to prevent them from toppling over on top of people. There should also be ladders installed for workers to access items on tall shelves throughout the warehouse, and the ladders should conform with industry standards.

Warehouse workers may be able to file claims for workers’ compensation through their employers’ insurance carriers when they suffer from workplace injuries. While a contractor may not receive workers’ compensation benefits for their injuries, they may be able to hold the businesses liable if negligence caused the accident. A warehouse accident victim may want to meet with a lawyer to learn about the recovery rights they might have.