Workers at Florida loading docks are often very busy. Whether located at warehouses, distribution centers or factories, loading docks are the place where freight is received and unloaded. While some are located outdoors, others may be inside a receiving bay. In most cases, workers operate near a storage room or other staging area to hold the freight until it is used. Just as these operations can be vital for a company, they can also be potential sites for dangerous accidents and injuries.
Unloading a large truck is a fast-paced job. In most cases, truck drivers and loading dock workers are on a tight schedule, so they need to move quickly to clear out the truck. They may be dealing with large, heavy items that require specialized equipment for transport. A forklift is one of the most commonly used pieces of machinery in the loading dock area. Unfortunately, over 100,000 workplace injuries every year are related to forklifts or other types of powered industrial trucks such as pallet jacks. Federal workplace safety rules require training for drivers operating forklifts and similar trucks.
In addition, loading practices can have a major impact on worker safety. Appropriate gear, such as trucks and hand carts, should be used in order to avoid muscle, joint and bone injuries. Furthermore, certain types of material require special handling guidelines in order to avoid fire, chemical danger or other hazards.
Unsafe loading dock areas and practices often lead to serious work-related accidents. However, a workers' compensation attorney can help an injured employee protect their rights and pursue the benefits that they deserve.