State programs Wholesale and retail trade Injury prevention Food

Virginia DOLI issues hazard alert on beverage materials handling, storage

beer kegs
Photo: LeMusique/iStockphoto

Richmond, VA — The Virginia Department of Labor and Industry has issued a hazard alert warning of the potential dangers of unsafe materials handling and storage in the beverage distribution and retail industry.

The alert, released Aug. 10, warns that various activities associated with handling and storing materials may result in injury. These activities include transporting pallets, boxes and kegs of beverages; manually carrying materials; and stacking palletized beverages.

The alert offers injury prevention tips for workers in the industry, including:

  • Use gloves and steel-toed footwear when manually moving materials.
  • Do not lift loads weighing more than 50 pounds. Use forklifts, pallet jacks or hand trucks for heavier loads.
  • Place materials near the middle of the body when lifting. Bend at the knees and keep your back straight.
  • Do not carry loads on one shoulder, under an arm or in one hand.
  • Keep storage areas free of gathered materials that may cause tripping, fires or explosions.
  • Store beverages on racks, and secure them by stacking, blocking or interlocking them to protect from sliding, falling or collapsing.
  • Ensure stacks are stable and self-supporting, and that materials are stored no closer than 18 inches from walls, partitions or sprinkler heads.

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