Pallets can easily lead to injuries, especially when they are handled or used improperly. The good news is, these injuries can easily be prevented. The Balance, Safety and Health Magazine and Safety Toolbox Topics list out some useful safety tips that will help prevent common pallet-related injuries.

When working with pallets, it is important to:

  • Wear protective gear: Hand and foot injuries are common, but they can be avoided by wearing gloves and safety shoes.
  • Inspect for defects:
    • Remove cracked, weak, and damaged pallets from the workplace so they won’t be used.
    • Look for loose and protruding nails- A cut from a rusty nail could result in Tetanus, which can be fatal.
  • Handle and move properly:
    • Maintain proper posture when lifting pallets, and use two employees for heavy loads to prevent strains and pulls.
    • Don’t drop or throw pallets- for your sake, and the pallet’s
  • Stack and load properly:
    • Distribute weight evenly when loading, and don’t exceed maximum weight
    • Always lay pallets flat, and stack no higher than 4 feet
    • Use forklifts when stacking more than 7 or 8 pallets high
  • Avoid walking over pallets: stepping on a weak board or a protruding nail could result in injury
  • Keep work area clean:
    • Immediately pick up and throw away any broken pallet pieces to prevent accidents
    • Make sure pallets don’t impede access to important areas and entrances-doorways, emergency exits, fire extinguishers and other emergency equipment, etc.