If you’ve read the most recent OSHA’s (Occupational Safety and Heath Administration) top 10 citations for the 2012 calendar year (seen on OSHA’s website), fall protection tops the list. Not only that, but fall protection also topped the list for being assessed the highest penalties for the same time frame (October 1st 2011 – September 30th 2012).
What else is on the list for highest penalties? Sitting at number seven are “industrial trucks”, aka forklifts or lift trucks used to move materials.
So, What Does it Mean?
Well, to many it would indicate businesses and other industrial properties are failing to properly protect its workers in and around a dock. One of the most important aspects of a business is its loading docks, yet according to the OSHA statistics from last year many of these businesses utilizing a dock are failing to provide a safe workplace, opening the door for potential lawsuits.
Loading docks have been around for thousands of years. At the ancient ports of Greece and Egypt, workers used simple technologies like the lever and the barrel to help make the arduous task of unloading vessels easier. And standardized containers – like the amphora that litter the Mediterranean bottom – made packing and unpacking ships easier. Yet in the years since, the safety of modern dock workers has not been properly addressed.
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