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Storage Stocking Safety: Helpful tips for reducing injuries while stocking

2 minute read time

Serious injuries can occur when unloading and stacking supplies in the storage area due to not lifting items properly. However, maintaining a clean and organized storage area is essential to preventing these injuries.

Stacking and Storage

  • Proper stacking and storing of items will help you locate products safely as well as maintain an accurate count of inventory.
  • Stack heavier items on the lower shelves to reduce the need to reach over your head. 
  • Place items that you and other staff members use frequently on shelves at waist level to reduce unnecessary reaching.
  • The oldest product or anything already opened should be placed in the front, ensuring that it is utilized first. 
  • Store products with the label facing up or facing toward the front of the storage shelf. 
  • Keep storage areas clean. Not only does this help fight foodborne illness; an organized storage area makes it much easier to find the product you need. 
  • When you open a product, label it with the date it was opened.

The Lifting Process

To avoid injury, pick up and set down a load following these steps.

  1. Bring the load as close to your body as possible before lifting.
  2. Push up with your legs instead of your back by bending your knees. Keep your head up and your back straight.
  3. If you need to turn, shift your feet instead of twisting your body at the waist. 
  4. When walking, keep the load directly in front of you with your elbows close to your body.
  5. When setting the load down, bend at your knees to slowly lower the load. Watch out for your fingers and toes.

Lifting Smart

  • Follow these safety tips to reduce the risk of injury when stacking and storing products. 
  • Use a stool or ladder to access items on high shelves to avoid reaching over your head. 
  • Separate large boxes into smaller loads and carry them one at a time.
  • Use handrails when traveling on stairs and carrying items. 
  • Use a hand cart when moving large items.
  • Wear gloves to prevent slivers or nail puncture wounds on your hands.
  • Never attempt to carry anything without first examining the path you will take. If there are obstacles in the way, remove them before continuing.

This flyer is for informational purposes only and is not intended as medical or legal advice.

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