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There’s no debating that reaching our goals without any effort it’s rarely possible. We know only too well the kind of fatigue the weight of our work responsibilities and routines generate on us. We are constantly overcoming a sea of difficulties to better ourselves in the tasks we do. However, while striving to become the best we can be, we should never neglect our health or that of our co-workers’. That’s why today, we’d like to share some tips to help you make your workplace a much healthier and enjoyable space for everyone.

 

Firstly, it’s essential to encourage healthy eating in our teams. Including fruits and vegetables in the diet is a key component of a better quality of life. Drinking water, avoiding soft drinks or cola drinks, avoiding snacks and foods high in fat or sugar are also key measures to promote.

 

In second place, fighting smoking – another key strategy given the proven damage that addiction causes on health. We recommend developing internal educational campaigns on the subject, while implementing smoke-free areas and setting up limited spaces for smokers.

Meanwhile, it is also recommended to generate policies that invite staff to participate in sports and other physical and aerobic activities. For example, some firms sign agreements with gyms in their vicinities to offer discounted membership for their employees. Others generate internal sporting competitions among peers to encourage exercise and build stronger bonds amongst their employees.

 

These sort of activities not only help release stress but also encourage better brain function. Similarly, experts advise, among other things, creating corporate preventive programs in the field of Occupational Health to help combat work stress, depression and poor relationships.

Meanwhile, on a day-to-day basis it is important to attend to the tasks that are given to the operators: we must avoid giving a workload that puts the person in a space of responsibilities that is too monotonous and limited, preventing him or her from having social contact or relationship with their peers and limiting the development and application of his or her creative abilities.

 

In the same sense, it’s important for task assignments not to generate role conflicts which could cause employees to have far too many responsibilities not related to their specialty on their shoulders, only to become a burden. Having clearly determined hierarchical structures will also help create a more harmonious and orderly operation.

 

Always committed to a continued global strategic development, at Claitec we have expanded our capacity to provide comprehensive safety solutions worldwide and today we are proud to share the news that we have landed in the exciting Chinese market!

 

Claitec’s presence in China will be managed by our distributor: Greenpack (http://www.dehao.com/), who has already created a specific webpage (http://www.gosafety-china.com/pas/) to inform the industrial community in the Asian giant about our products and services and to help them discover the different functionalities and solutions that our tools and developments offer for their industries in their search for improved safety at work.

 

Today, no one can ignore the importance of the Asian market on the global map, let alone the strength of the Chinese industry. China is a world leader in gross industrial production value. In addition, China has an economy that has registered a constant GDP per capita growth in the last decade, among many other strengths. All this propels us to take this step forward, convinced that we have a lot to contribute in such a thriving and important economy for the global industry.

We know that -in line with what happens in other parts of the globe- in China there is a great concern and a growing interest in improving all areas of industrial safety. It is in this context that we have begun our work and the first signs show a very good acceptance of the solutions we offer.

 

If you’d like to find out further details about our company and about the products and solutions we provide, please don’t hesitate to contact us at: https://claitec.com/en/contact/

 

Logistic Summit & Expo 2018, the Latin America’s main trade fair in Intralogistics and Supply Chain, was held a few days ago in Mexico.

 

The Claitec team, together with Drill Company, Claitec’s importer in Mexico, exhibited its PAS (Pedestrian Alert System) product ranges and latest developments.

Drill Company’s presence at the fair represented an excellent opportunity to promote the CLAITEC brand and products on the Latin American market.

 

Claitec is delighted with the reception our stand had amongst visitors.

 

We have addressed the need to be vigilant about pedestrians within our industrial spaces more than once. We have also spoken about some of the precautions forklifts must take in order to avoid accidents and minimise any potential risks. In this post we’d like to introduce you to an innovative system that not only manages traffic in work spaces, but it does so autonomously.

 

Enter the Traffic Control System (TCS), which is used to separate pedestrians from forklifts in a joint work space. The TCS is a comprehensive traffic control system, which does not depend on batteries or mobile devices. It works totally passively which means that it does not require human attention, constant maintenance or monitoring.

An AC-50 activator, a TZ2-Tag, a control box, a beacon, a traffic light and gate are required to operate the TCS Solution. These are all durable components capable of resisting the harsh industrial routine. The devices that are installed in the warehouse allow the detection of the forklifts already equipped with the activator. If necessary, the information is then sent to the traffic lights, the signalling beacons, the safety gates and railings, in order to segregate pedestrians.

To give you an idea of the TCS’s function – when a truck enters the safety zone delimited by the TZ2-Tag, the vehicle’s and warehouse lighting’s warnings are activated to alert them of their presence. At the same time, the pedestrian traffic light turns red and the safety gate is blocked preventing workers in that work space to continue walking. When the truck leaves the safety space, the traffic light automatically turns green and the previously activated mechanisms are unlocked.

This innovative system can be perfectly applied in areas with low visibility, in spaces where there is a risk of blind spots, at pedestrian and forklift crossings, in spaces with a high forklift traffic, loading and unloading areas, in warehouses, production lines and many other options that you will surely find when installing it in your facilities.

 

If you want to know more about this innovative product you can see an illustrative video here. If you want more information about this system or any of the other products we offer, do not hesitate to contact us.

 

 

In previous posts we talked about forklift safety and the best possible ways to add prevention elements to these key tools in our industries. Today, we’d like to share some of the control systems and forklift fleet management methods used by the leading brands in our industry to help us understand some of their key safety functions that could allow us to reduce workplace accidents.

First, it’s important to understand that the professional monitoring of the use of forklifts and the constant and strategic monitoring of their journey will not only provide greater safety for all our team members but it will allow us to operate in a much more efficient and holistic way.

 

One of the methods used involves RFID readers and/or codes – a configuration is established that allows the trucks to be used only by authorised and specially trained personnel. This way managers know at all times who is driving each of these heavy vehicles.

At the same time, documenting impacts is a very useful process that helps us analyse the operation and circulation of forklifts and to identify the main areas and causes of accidents. With that goal in mind, impact sensors are being incorporated to loading vehicles in such a way that, in case of collision, this is registered in a database that includes the name of the person driving at the moment of the impact.

In addition, this type of measures will lead to the operators being more careful when practicing certain types of manoeuvres. These systems will provide useful information on the operating patterns of the forklift and will help track and plan its maintenance stages.

We should also point out that Claitec’s PAS Solution can also bring great value to this type of fleet control development. One of the most interesting advantages of this product is its ability to record when and which trucks detected a pedestrian. This way, we can locate the critical points of circulation in our industry and the areas of greatest risk to pedestrians, in order to take measures and avoid accidents in the future.

 

These are some of the impact control and fleet management systems implemented by the biggest brands in the world:

 

  • Toyota i-site: a fleet management and registration system that allows the company to monitor the use of the forklift and the operator’s performance in real time. It provides a continuous analysis and advice to clients.
  • The Linde Fleet Management  system for the control of forklift fleets, developed by Linde Material Handling Ibérica, and focused towards offering customers the possibility to have key data on their fleet in real time.
  • The ISM Online system from Jungheinrich, responsible for forklift management information and which corresponds to a comprehensive fleet management with which an entire fleet of trucks can be managed, regardless of size and complexity.
  • And Still’s Fleet Manager which generates a complete plan of the management and monitoring of the industrial fleet, considering the optimisation of resources and the professional and efficient operation of our work vehicles.

 

If you’d like to find out more information about the solutions we can provide, don’t hesitate to contact us: https://claitec.com/en/contact/

 

Keeping your company safe means protecting the people that make it what it is. When it comes to responding to an emergency, those people and your company are put at risk. The best way to keep everyone safe is to take the time and create an emergency evacuation plan. But in order to have an effective evacuation plan, your company needs to keep some important things in mind.

 

Setting Expectations

 

The key to creating and maintaining an effective emergency plan begins with knowing exactly what you want. It is important to know the necessary timeframe for a successful evacuation, and where employees are expected to go during the emergency. The ‘where’ and ‘evacuation time’ are the most important expectations to get in order. These must be based on the risks of your company in particular. You cannot properly institute risk prevention policies without being aware of the potential risks you face.

 

In the event of a serious emergency, there may be areas of the building that are more likely to be compromised than others: rooms containing highly flammable substances, areas with obstructions, etc. This means that these parts of the building should be avoided during an evacuation. In the case of the storage of combustible or other potentially harmful materials, an evacuation point should be a safe distance away from these areas.

 

How long you have to evacuate will mainly be dependent on the types of risks your company faces. Always plan for the timeframe of the emergency that has the shortest time allotted for evacuation. That way you can evacuate fast enough to protect your employees no matter what happens.

 

Alternative Evacuation

 

We all know the saying about best-laid plans, and how they often go awry. An emergency evacuation plan should take this into account most of all. As much as you can try to expect the unexpected, there are always complications. People can panic and create unanticipated problems for even the best plans. Similarly, safety measures you planned to rely on could fail in the moment. That is why a truly effective evacuation strategy is somewhat fluid. A comprehensive workplace safety model will take all these factors into account, in order to craft a seamless emergency evacuation strategy.

 

There should never be one available exit path or one relied upon rendezvous point. These are just not reliable enough to stake the well-being of all your employees on. The confusion that can ensue during an emergency is often due to excessively rigid evacuation plans. That rigidity can make all the preparation worthless. That is why training and planning must be dynamic. In these extreme and unpredictable situations being able to account for employees is a must. At the end of the day, it is about making sure everyone is safe.

 

Practice

 

An emergency plan is not complete without a plan of how to teach it and train people to use it. And far too often practice breeds complacency. Employees and even employers begin to simply go through the motions of drills and training. I believe that all forms of practice must be somewhat confrontational in order to be effective. This is not to say that these drills and planning sessions should be disrespectful, but they should challenge employees. The expectations that you have set should be maintained, and there should be experimentation with alternative evacuations.

 

One of the best methods of practice is to simply ask employees about the evacuation plan. When they propose a way of exiting the building, have a probable means of denying it. They say, “I would use the emergency exit at the end of the hall.” You respond, “The roof over that exit has caved in. What do you do?” This shakes people out of complacency. They are no longer being led or relying solely on what they already know.

 

This kind of confrontational preparation gets the mind working in the ways needed to solve problems during the high stress of an emergency. Also, businesses can incentivize their employees to encourage more participation in the safety program. Furthermore, rigorous practice helps highlight workplace risks that come in handy during a workplace risk assessment.

 

The Safety Mindset

 

There is a cost to safety. It takes both an investment of time and money to create the most effective plans. You will need to set aside time to train employees on safety procedures and the proper way evacuate. And training, drills, and other forms of practice must be ongoing to assure the effectiveness of the overall safety strategy. The company will also need to have effective safety and security technology.

 

As mentioned above, tracking your employees is invaluable for evacuation planning. Not only will you be able to know that everyone made it out, in the worst case scenario you will be able to point emergency responders in the right direction. It is also important to have the physical safety and security devices in the building working effectively.

 

Doors and locks are especially important, as malfunctions of this type can lead to lockouts, trapping employees during an emergency. Sticking doors, locks that are not turning smoothly, etc., should be seen as red flags.

 

Most of the time security professionals can salvage this type of security hardware with maintenance, but you must always be willing to invest in installing new commercial locks. There are a good selection of warehouse locks that can be used to bolster your warehouse security and keep your emergency evacuation plan well rounded. Whenever something is not working, you cannot shy away from the cost of safety.

 

Final Thoughts

 

To have an effective emergency plan, you need to know what you are looking to accomplish. Where people are evacuating to, and how fast they need to get there. There must be room for things to change without causing a catastrophic breakdown in the plan. This comes from dynamic and confrontational practice methods. And at the end of the day, the willingness to invest the resources into this preparedness will determine how safe your employees and company are.

 

We discussed in previous posts the importance of guaranteeing forklift safety as well as the different ways through which we can improve accident prevention levels within our industries and work spaces. Today, we would like to expand on these areas and explain the multiple benefits of a very useful and easy to deploy tool: the PCS Solution.

 

Especially designed to ensure the physical integrity of pedestrians in crossings but applicable to any parts of the journey in industrial spaces, the PCS Solution warns the forklift by previously installed traffic lights the presence and eventual crossing of pedestrians in its work area. This way, the operator handling a load and concentrating on the driving of heavy vehicles, is able to notice the presence nearby of a pedestrian and can take precautionary measures, significantly reducing accidents and risks of running employees over.

The implementation of the PCS system very simple. Apart from the traffic lights, pedestrians circulating in the facility must carry small tags – similar to a keychain -, which will emit light signals when detected by a previously installed RFID activator. That same activator oversees the sending of the signal to the traffic lights, indicating in this manner the presence of a person in the place in question.

All these elements are very easy to implement and a especially durable and robust.

 

This system is generally used in pedestrian crossing areas, pedestrian and forklift intersections, spaces with a lot of forklift movement, loading and unloading areas and merchandise storage spaces, among others.

 

Keen to find out more about the PCS Solution?

You can read about in our website, or contact us directly about this or any other of our products which might be of your interest.

 

The image tends to repeat itself regardless of the industry we talk about – forklifts travelling from one place to another, braking, loading, accelerating, braking, unloading… again and again. Forklifts are like ants moving through our facilities, key pieces of our daily work and for many, a second home.

Keeping always in mind the importance forklifts have in our daily work life, it’s important we keep them in excellent working condition, complying with all established safety guidelines and constantly making of them – and our industry in general – a safer place.

In this post we’d like to highlight some general safety features of these industrial vehicles as well as discuss several tools that can be added to make them even safer.

 

Ignacio Bereciartu, ULMA’s After Sales Service Manager recently explained in an article published on the website www.manutencionyalmacenaje.com that his firm conducts a comprehensive periodic review to strengthen the safety of these machines. This analysis includes all the checks and adjustments which – according to the NTP 715 of the National Institute of Safety and Hygiene at Work – a forklift requires to be considered in optimal conditions, both in the functional as well as in the safety aspects of the vehicle.

Bereciartu clarified that “there is no strict norm, as in the rest of the countries, regarding the periodic inspections that forklifts must comply with” and said that his firm analyses: the driving position, the lifting elements, wheels, micros and sensors, braking systems and signalling systems, together with other safety indicators, such as license plates, operators’ manuals and CE marking.

 

He also highlighted some of the safety measures implemented in the forklifts which constantly help prevent accidents in ULMA’s workplace. For example, more and more vehicles have presence detection systems which paralyse the wheel of the forklift and the elevation of the mast as soon as it senses the driver is no longer sitting – or more precisely, when he or she lifts his or her rear from the seat.

In addition to this, devices are used to keep the forklift halted until the driver puts on his or her seatbelt. That system is not designed as in a normal car – its goal is to ensure that in a risk situation the operator does not jump out of the cabin instinctively, an action which would expose him or her even more.

The forklift’ automatic lighting – which lights up when the forklift is started – and a device for detecting blind spots or speed limitations are also some of the developments highlighted by Bereciartu in the aforementioned article, and safety feature we should all contemplate incorporating into our work vehicles and spaces.

 

This is also our goal at Claitec. Some of our developments provide forklifts with various tools to operate more efficiently and safely. The BS (Blind Spot) Solution, for instance, indicates who has the right of way at intersections by means of traffic lights and warning lights previously installed in industrial spaces. Experience with our clients shows that once the BS Solution is installed, the risks of running over pedestrians are minimised and collisions between trucks are reduced in areas of limited visibility.

Similarly, the NAS (Narrow Aisle) Solution provides additional safety in narrow corridors. Highly requested by our customers, this high-performance product uses a traffic light to warns drivers when another forklift is also circulating in a narrow aisle. This development is useful for high shelving areas and reduced spaces, especially for retractable and trilateral forklifts.

Finally, the LSA (Low Speed Area) System, regulates and limits the speed of the forklift in loading areas, helping reduce risks and preventing accidents.

 

To find out more about our products, we invite you to visit our website: claitec.com.

If you are looking for further details on a specific topic or if you have any questions for us, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

 

Pablo Picasso once said:

creativity exists, but it must find you working”.

 

At Claitec we not only share the great master´s wonderful words of wisdom but we try to apply them to our routines as reality keeps us constantly in our toes and force us to be creative and up-to-date. Creativity helps us find solutions to the challenges faced by our clients and friends, encourages us to always go further, improve ourselves and put ourselves to the test to find new ways to innovate and create.

 

A perfect example of this creative spirit is the case we want to share with you in this post. It involves our work with the prestigious Swedish multinational IKEA – a leading pioneer in its field worldwide.

IKEA had been using the PAS Solution for a long time in more than the 70 forklifts operating in one of its main warehouses in Valls (Tarragona), operated by FM Logistics. The system in this facility focused on protecting pedestrians when forklifts approached them. The system detected the proximity of a pedestrian, warned the driver and caused the vehicle to start moving slower to protect operators from any potential impact or risk or from being run over. But in this case, and after using the system for a while, IKEA´s Safety Director in Tarragona consulted us about the possibility of incorporating a new functionality to the PAS System – an inhibitor of the speed limitation function.

 

The IKEA team wanted the speed limitation feature to be activated by default in a forklift in the presence of a nearby pedestrian, having the possibility – by means of a button – to maintain its normal speed at the time.

 

Thanks to this new feature, the driver notices the presence of an operator and takes control of the situation, being able to circulate normally after having inhibited the speed limit. This method allows time to be gained in the displacement, the productivity of the vehicles is greatly improved, the drivers are given more control, and the safety of the pedestrian being detected by the forklift is always maintained.

 

This new development has the unique particularity that the push button that the driver carries to maintain the speed – after the pedestrian is detected – incorporates an automatic timer. This makes the inhibition effective only for 5 seconds, as a form of prevention and to always maintain the attention of the driver in his or her surroundings. If the driver needs to keep his speed longer, he or she will have to press the button again and will given another 5 seconds.

The system is designed in such a way that it cannot be sabotaged and the speed control cannot be permanently inhibited. This adaptation is now available as an accessory for other PAS users who want to incorporate it.

If you would like to have more information about this or about another of our products and services, don´t hesitate to contact us.

 

Our previous article explained the importance of safety training in the prevention of accidents in the workplace. Following with that same line, today we’d like to address a very important issue of current concern throughout the world: the use of mobile phones during working hours.

 

Mobile phones are already a fundamental part of our lives. Our routines include the use of the mobile phone during a good part of our day for a range of different activities – from personal conversations with family and friends to a professional use to handle some of our responsibilities.

However, we also know that using mobile phones during working hours can not only result in lost efficiency, but it also becomes a significant risk factor, especially in areas of concern to us such as the industrial world, factories and cargo handling facilities.

 

But what can be done about the use of mobile phones at work? Should we ban them? Should we punish the user? The truth is that there is not a single answer for these questions, but there are a number of different recommendations that are being put into practice by companies around the world, including some of the largest corporation.

 

Some of the current trends we can use as example include the signing of labour agreements with employees or trade union representatives stating that the use of mobile phones is not allowed during working hours and establishing the possibility of sanction if this rule is not respected.

Another option is to install signage indicating the areas where mobile phone usage is permitted and those where it is prohibited. Some companies also install warning signs on forklifts to alert the drivers and remind them of the responsibilities they assume from the first moment they start driving or handling loads. Posters on the subject are also placed in common spaces – such as changing rooms –  reminding employees of the risks linked with mobile phone usage.

 

On the other hand, some companies place posters reminding operators that certain spaces – such as rest areas, dining rooms or patios – are suitable for mobile use, going as far as making WI-FI network available to them. Installing these posters is a way of saying to operators: “You can now use your mobile phones but remember that you will not be able to do so afterwards”.

Beyond the different measures that can be taken in the matter of mobile phones, the key is to accompany all the actions with solid training and awareness campaigns on the risks involved in using mobile phones in work areas, and to report the increased number of accidents when security parameters in this regard are not followed.

 

Would you like more information about how to reduce risks in your factory or plant?

Please, don’t hesitate to contact us.

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