OUMH2203 by NoorLubna



                                          Prepared for
                                      Managing Director
                                         Xxxxx sdn Bhd
                                Occupational Health Manager

1.0 Introduction

Safety in the work place is a matter worthy of utmost concern from the management as it
involves preventing any harm whether physical, physiological, or psychological in nature.
Any company worth its salt should realize that work place safety and health of employees is
synonymous to protecting the assets of the organization.

A rise in issues on well-being among employees is equivalent to an unaccountable amount in
losses due to lowered productivity and medical expenses. And, having a healthy workforce
will help sustain a nation's economic growth in the long term. It's critical for an organization
to enforce safety in work place and that workers stay safe and healthy as they age.

Therefore, the purpose of this report is to submit my concerns as the Occupational Health
Manager regarding some safety issues that being neglected blatantly by our operators in
Material Handling Department.        As our company produces heavy load products which
require proper and safety packaging and storage, the handling of the finished products from
the production area to the storage area is critically need to be done carefully to avoid any fatal
injuries or accidents especially the forklift handling.

There are several matters I would like to highlight and some recommendations and
suggestions will be laid out in this report for consideration. I hope that the recommendations
will be taken into consideration and necessary actions will be taken as soon as you finished
reading this report.
2.0 Problems

Material handling is a significant safety concern. During the movement of products and
materials there are numerous opportunities for personal injury and property damage if proper
procedures and caution are not used. There are 4 major issues that needed to be intensely
looked into and the situations must be corrected immediately.

The problems raised are regarding;

2.1 Forklift Mishandle

The 'workhorse' in many factories is the forklift truck. It carries heavy goods from the
production to storage and vice versa, which means that transport is key safety risk factor.
Through my observations and interviews with workers, most of them do not have any
qualifications that permit them to handle forklift. Thus, they don’t know about forklift’s
operating instructions, warnings, and precautions for the types of forklift the operator will be
authorized to operate. The workers might not also understand the differences between the
forklift and the automobile. Furthermore, the workers are not trained about forklift’s controls
and instrumentation such as where they are located, what they do, and how they work. They
drive the forklift with dangerous level of speed as if it is their personal vehicle. They also use
the forklift to load as many as boxes from production area to the store area. The overload
cause the worker who is driving the forklift could not see over the boxes he is moving.
Accidents can happen when loading or unloading these delivery vehicles.

2.2 Lifting heavy items

One of the most common problems when moving is lifting things. This is also commonly the
highest cause of injuries when moving. It is very important to take proper precautions when
moving, to make sure there are enough persons to lift heavy objects, and that lifting is done
properly so as to mitigate as best as possible the potential for injury. At the same time there
are a number of very easy ways to accomplish this, and while moving things isn’t exactly fun,
it is a lot less fun if someone is injured, or something gets broken. Through my observations,
the safety factor in this matter also being neglected by the workers. The activities include
putting down, pushing, pulling, carrying or moving of a load.
2.3 Electricity Safety in the Factory

Electricity is used extensively in this department often at a higher voltage, 415v, than
domestic supplies. Some workers are unaware that they work among potential electrical
hazards. The dangers from electricity can come from:

• Portable Electrical Equipment

• Leads, Plugs and Sockets are often a source of accidents. Problems usually arise from
damage to the insulation on the lead or strain on the connection into the plug.

Workers also ignore to wear Personal Protective Equipment – including Work clothing while
working with electrical equipments.

2.4 Slipping and Tripping

There are many situations that may cause slips, trips, and falls, such as ice, wet spots, grease,
polished floors, loose flooring or carpeting, uneven walking surfaces, clutter, electrical cords,
open desk drawers and filing cabinets, and damaged ladder steps. Slipping and tripping are
workplace safety issues in any work environment, including what is happening in our
Material Handling Department. There are liquids spilled on a slippery floor, and workers do
not bother to wipe it up. This could cause other workers fall and get injured. The walkways
between each machinery also filled with many obstructions such as rejected parts or unused
hardware tools. Some workers also not carefully climbing up and down ladders to arrange
boxes on the storage racks.

3.0 Recommendations

The health and safety issue should be prioritised and given utmost attention, regardless of the
department. Here are some recommendations to improve safety standards based on areas of
issues raised.

3.1 Forklift Safety

To ensure the safety of workers when handling the forklifts, the following standards and
procedures should be implemented;

3.1.1 All candidates for forklift operators must meet the following basic requirements prior to
starting initial or annual training:
●       Must have no adverse vision problems that cannot be corrected by glasses or contacts

●       No adverse hearing loss that cannot be corrected with hearing aids

●       No physical impairments that would impair safe operation of the forklift

●       No neurological disorders that affect balance or consciousness

●       Not taking any medication that affects perception, vision, or physical abilities

3.1.2 Training

Training for forklift Operators should be conducted by an experienced operator, selected by
Management. All operational training should be conducted under close supervision. All
training and evaluation must be completed before an operator is permitted to use a forklift
without continual & close supervision. Training consists of: Trainees may operate a forklift only:

Under the direct supervision of persons, selected by management, who have the knowledge,
training, and experience to train operators and evaluate their competence; and where such
operation does not endanger the trainee or other employees. Training Content

Training consists of a combination of formal instruction, practical training (demonstrations
performed by the trainer and practical exercises performed by the trainee), and evaluation of
the operator's performance in the workplace.

Initial Training: forklift operators shall receive initial training in the following topics:

1.      Operating instructions, warnings, and precautions for the types of forklift the
        operator will be authorized to operate

2.      Differences between the forklift and the automobile

3.      Forklift controls and instrumentation: where they are located, what they do, and how
        they work

4.      Engine or motor operation
5.     Steering and maneuvering

6.     Visibility (including restrictions due to loading)

7.     Fork and attachment adaptation, operation, and use limitations

8.     Vehicle capacity

9.     Vehicle stability

10.    Any vehicle inspection and maintenance that the operator will be required to

11.    Refueling and/or charging and recharging of batteries

12.    Operating limitations

13.    Any other operating instructions, warnings, or precautions listed in the operator's
       manual for the types of vehicle that the employee is being trained to operate.

3.2 Load Handling and Lifting

Manual lifting or carrying heavy loads should be a last resort only. There are ways to
eliminate or minimise manual tasks. As well as reducing health and safety risks for workers,
this recommendations will make work done more efficient.

3.2.1 Redesign the task

The task of lifting heavy load should be redesigned to avoid fatal injuries or accidents in the
factory. I would like to suggest that machines should be used wherever possible. The load to
be lifted manually also should be made lighter and less bulky. To make loads easier to grasp,
handles should be provided at the loads holder. When moving loads, mobile racks should be
used for pallets, containers or trays. Use skids, skates, wheels and slides as well. Other ways
to improve safety regarding lifting heavy loads are;

●      Keep heavy work items at waist height.

●      Push, pull, slide or roll a load (instead of carrying).

●      Use packaging that is not slippery with a comfortable temperature for handling.
●      Take precautions (for example, secure a load if the contents are likely to move).

●      Use non powered conveyors, air bearings, ball castor tables, monorails and other
       devices to reduce the need for pushing and pulling.

●      Use trolleys with large wheels or castors that roll freely, and with handles at about 1m.

●      Mechanical aids and assistive devices

●      Select the correct aids to suit the load and the work. Check they are light and easy to

●      Locate handling equipment close to the work area.

●      Maintain aids and devices in good working order.

●      Train workers in the correct use of aids and devices.

●      Storage

Store loads between thigh and shoulder level. Store only light items close to the floor or
above shoulder level. Where a load is to be lifted from a low to a high position, provide a
surface midway. This allows the load to be rested while the grip position is changed. Avoid
double handling. Implement 'just in time' arrangements to reduce the amount of materials in
storage and requiring handling. Arrange for the delivery of goods close to where they are
needed. Reorganize the work area to reduce the need to carry loads for long distances.
Implement a procedure so workers can access help with handling loads (particularly if they
are working alone or mechanical aids are not practical).

Match people involved in team handling arrangements. Train workers in safe manual
handling techniques.

3.3 Electrical Safety

According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), there are
four main types of injuries that can occur as a result of electricity-related accidents:
electrocution (which refers to the stopping of a heart due to an electric shock), electric shock,
burns and falls caused as a result of contact with electrical energy.
To ensure safety regarding usage of electrical in the Material Handling Department, there are
certain guidelines that should serve as a helpful reminder of basic electrical safety practices.

Firstly, the company must ensure an employee is properly trained and qualified for a job. Not
understanding the circumstances about the job can lead to accidents and injuries. Even
properly qualified workers are susceptible to accidents. That’s why it’s important to make
safety an integral part of the planning process for every job.

Other important safety tips to help avoid injuries include:

      Identify the electric shock and arc flash hazards, as well as others that may be present.
      Use the right tools for the job.
      Isolate equipment from energy sources.
      Test every circuit and every conductor every time before you touch it.
      Work on electrical equipment and conductors only when de-energized.
      Lock out/tag out and ground before working on equipment.
      Treat de-energized electrical equipment and conductors as energized until
       lockout/tagout, test, and ground procedures are implemented.
      Wear protective clothing and equipment and use insulated tools in areas where there
       are possible electrical hazards.

Adherence to these basic safety tips will help avoid serious – or even life-threatening –
injuries while working with electrical equipment.

3.4 Avoiding Slipping and Tripping

The controls needed to prevent these hazards are usually obvious, but too often ignored, such
as keeping walkways and stairs clear of scrap and debris; coiling up extension cords, lines,
and hoses when not in use; keeping electrical and other wires out of the way; wearing lug
soles in icy weather; clearing parking lots, stairs, and walkways in snowy weather; and using
salt/sand as needed. Place non-slip strips on stairways made of slippery materials to help
reduce accidents. Workers should be warned to be careful when climbing up and down
ladders to make sure that you do not mis-step on a rung and slip.
4.0 Conclusions

Workplace health and safety hazards can be costly (to lives and the bottom line), but the good
news is that they are largely preventable if you take the right precautions. In this report I have
identified and highlighted four areas of danger in Material and Handling Department that are,
forklift mishandle, lifting heavy loads, electrical safety and slipping and tripping that might
cause occupational accidents if not rectify immediately. I have also list recommendations on
improving safety standards in the department according to each of danger area. For forklift
handling, training is the most critical factor should be given to the workers involved. Lifting
heavy loads should be done majorly by machines and electrical equipments must be handled
carefully under trained personal’s supervision. Finally the area of production should be
cleared of obstructions and should be keep clean and systemically housekeeping should be
done periodically.


Alwi Saad, (2011). Occupational Safety and Health Management. Penang:USM Press

Benjamin O.Alli, (2008). Fundamental principles of occupational health and safety. London,
U.K.: International Labour Organization.

Factory    Safety    –   Managing     the   Risks.   Retrieved     October    25,   2012    from

Safety First in Your Factory. Retrieved October 25, 2012 from

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