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Materials Handling and Storage

Materials Handling and Storage

Hazard Overview

Hazard Overview

What is materials handling?

Materials handling refers to the movement of materials in the workplace and may involve the use of mechanized equipment.

What are the hazards associated with materials handling and storage?

Depending upon the type of materials and the means used to move them, the hazards associated with materials handling and storage can result in serious injury or death due to employees being struck by or caught between materials or the material handling equipment, as well as musculoskeletal injuries due to repetitive movement or improper techniques used when lifting and moving materials.

 

Solutions

Solutions

What can I do to protect myself and others?

Do not walk under a suspended load. Do not store materials beyond the load capacity of the surface on which they are placed. In addition, do not store materials in an unsafe manner that creates a high center of gravity unless the load can be adequately secured and stabilized to prevent shifting and collapse. When bodily moving materials, be sure to utilize proper lifting techniques to prevent back injury.

Do not operate material handling equipment such as forklifts or cranes unless you have been trained in the use of that equipment. If you observe another employee operating material handling equipment in an unsafe manner, report it to your employer immediately.

What resources are available to assist employers?

More information related to material handling can be found in the cranes and derricks and powered industrial trucks A-Z topics pages. The Which OSHA Standards Apply webpage can also help identify other standards that may be applicable to your worksite.

In addition, the NCDOL Library offers free safety and health videos and related research assistance on consensus standards (i.e., ANSI, NFPA, NEC). The education, training and technical assistance bureau provides free online safety and health training and outreach services (i.e., speaker's bureau requests, safety booths) upon request. Lastly, the consultative services bureau provides free and confidential onsite consultation regarding worksite safety and health hazards.

Regulations

Regulations

Which standards apply?

OSH has adopted the following standards for materials handling and storage in North Carolina:

General Industry

Maritime, Shipyard Employment

Maritime, Marine Terminals

Construction

Learn More

Learn More

Where can I learn more?

If you would like to receive interpretive guidance on this or any other OSH standard or topic, you can submit your questions using the Ask OSH web form, by e-mail to ask.osh@labor.nc.gov or by calling 919-707-7876.