Category : Work Injuries

Safety First!


As an end of line service provider, we are constantly being called upon to assess, troubleshoot, and optimize complex packaging lines.  You’d be surprised at how many plants we’ve walked in to that don’t enforce safety regulations. Here are four best practices to help improve warehouse safety

When a machine is down, hire an expert. Injuries are most common in plants that don’t keep up with maintenance on the equipment used to perform their jobs. If your automatic stretch wrapper isn’t working well, what originally began as an automated process is now a manual operation. All the bending, pulling, and twisting involved with manual wrapping could potentially expose these workers to injury.  Having unknowledgeable workers troubleshoot a machine will only cause more harm than good. By hiring an experienced professional to do the repair, they’ll be able to offer valuable preventative maintenance advice that will help you avoid more problems in the future.

Take measures to isolate operating machinery with proper guarding. Most of our customers operate very complex manufacturing lines. Although these machines have some of the most advanced capabilities, they can be dangerous if the proper safety systems aren’t in place. While machines can’t prevent employee negligence, actions can be taken to restrict access to hazardous areas. Most stretch wrappers now come with a safety guard gate option. This feature is designed to keep employees safe by providing a physical barrier that can prevent an employee from entering into a danger zone during the operating cycle.

Include cross training for all warehouse employees. The majority of the workman’s compensation incidents occur when an employee moves from one department to another. During times when one area of the plant is slow, managers will usually re-position their workers to lend a hand to a busy area. When employees are transferred but not properly training they are put at a higher risk of injury.

Make certain the aisles are kept clean and clear.  Free the area of objects or obstacles that might interfere with a forklift driver’s ability to have a clear path.  Clean up any litter that might have been left behind on the warehouse floors. It’s also important to allow enough space for multiple forklifts to pass through the aisles. After all, the last thing you want is to encounter pallets collapsing because a forklift couldn’t maneuver through a crowded lane. Once you have arranged a wide-enough space, mark the floor with arrows that designate lanes specifically for trucks and employees to pass through.

Take the time to identify where an operation exposes an employee to injury, and take action to implement a safe work environment before it’s too late.To enroll in a preventative maintenance program, or if you suspect one of your machines is not operating properly, give us a call to schedule an inspection at (888) 930 BEST or click here.

The Drawbacks of Hand Wrapping


Ever since the creation of stretch wrapping, various types of applications have been developed for unitizing pallet loads. One of these methods includes hand wrapping which involves a person walking around the pallet, securing the load with a hand-held stretch film roller. Although some people might find this method useful today, it’s not always the most productive.

Depending on the size and structure of the pallet that you are wrapping, there is a large amount of bending and twisting involved in making sure that the entire pallet is wrapped thoroughly. Even with orderly and square pallets, hand wrapping requires that an employee walk around in circles which causes dizziness and may lead to a higher risk of harm for employees. Thus, hand wrapping could generate inefficiencies in the supply chain process as work injuries cause downtime, high insurance costs, and workers compensation. Sometimes you may even need to hire a replacement worker which could result in more time and money.

Stretch wrapper machines have powered film delivery systems that typically stretch the film at a high level than hand wrapping. In most cases, this creates a cost savings of anywhere from 25% – 40% because less film is needed to contain the pallet (B2BInd). Alternatively, most workers operating hand-held stretch films rarely stretch film more than 50 percent during the hand wrap process. A nationwide evaluation of hand wrapping in real-life situations found that the average person stretches hand wrap less than 15%, thereby hindering the stretch film’s ability to effectively hold a shifting load (B2BInd). When pallets aren’t wrapped tightly enough, they are likely to fall apart causing damage to other products as well. With hand wrapping, an operator has the potential to wrap several loads, but the performance of a machine is much more reliable.

If you’re experiencing any of these drawbacks, it might be time to upgrade a stretch wrapping machine. For more information, visit our website or give us a call at (888) 930 BEST

Signs Your Business Could Benefit From A Stretch Wrapper


It may seem like a good decision to hold off on making a large investment, however future downtime could end up costing you more than you think.  If you are experiencing any of this in your wrapping process, it may be a wise decision to make a stretch wrap machine purchase.

  • You’re wrapping more than 20 pallets a day. It would probably be in your best interest to get a stretch wrap machine because of the manual labor that is involved with hand wrapping. A large amount of bending and twisting is required in making sure that the entire pallet is wrapped thoroughly. The amount of physical work involved takes a lot of energy that employees will need throughout the day. A stretch wrap machine would not only speed up the process, but also free up the employee to accomplish other tasks while the pallet is being wrapped.
  • You’re experiencing load damage because of improper wrapping. In order for stretch film to work properly, it has to be stretched 70-80% of its ultimate stretch. Ultimate stretch is what helps to hold pallet loads in place. When wrapping pallets by hand, it is difficult to consistently reach the amount of required stretch which could potentially lead to products falling over and cost more money.
  • Stretch film costs are becoming too high. It is quite uncommon for workers to reach maximum stretch potential. which results in a lot of money being wasted on excess stretch film. However, with a stretch wrap machine, you’re able to boost the stretch rate and eliminate unnecessary extra revolutions of film being applied which could reduce costs.
  • You’re having issues with employee safety. An automatic stretch wrapper would keep a forklift operator on the forklift which is could be an important safety advantage. Not to mention, a poorly wrapped pallet can fall over, resulting in damaged goods or injury to a handler. A stretch wrap machine could ensure worker safety by properly wrapping loads in a timely manner.
  • You encounter inconsistent output. An operator who wraps pallets with hand wrap stretch film is not able to wrap every load exactly the same way, time and time again. Whereas, a stretch wrap machine consistently wraps pallets in the same way each and every time producing a clean professional finished product. Thus, if you’re looking for your pallet loads to project a professional image, it’s best to consider a stretch wrap machine

Eliminating any one of these justifies purchasing a stretch wrap machine. Let Best Packaging speak with you about a possible purchase and help you decide the right stretch wrap machine for your application by calling us at (888) 930 BEST.

How To Reduce The Cost Of Work Injuries


As an employer, it’s your responsibility for taking care of the health and safety of your employees.  A serious work injury can change someone’s life and the lives around them forever.  A work-related injury can also negatively affect the company by increasing costs to your business. Therefore, it’s important to take necessary measures to maintain a healthy and safety work environment.

If workers are injured on the job, it costs the company in increased insurance rates, workers’ compensation premiums, lost work hours, and possible litigation. If an employee sues because of a work-related injury, a company could run into some serious financial trouble; whereas keeping employees healthy helps companies keep the cost of insurance premiums down. Work injuries can also decrease worker productivity if other workers get distracted or the injured worker needs to time off to heal.  Thus, reducing the amount of injuries allows employees to keep the focus on the quality of what they do.

In the packaging industry, one of the most common injuries comes with operating a forklift. Employees often have to maneuver in and out of forklifts which can lead to pain in their backs, knees, etc.  However, there is an alternative that can help reduce the risk of those injuries.  Obtaining stretch wrappers with an automatic cut and clamp saves the operator the hassle of getting in and out of the forklift as often, which can minimize the chance of injury or falls. Therefore, having the stretch wrapper that automatically attaches and cuts film during the wrap cycle can potentially reduce the risk of injuries and save the company thousands.

Another common injury involves hand wrapping a pallet. Depending on the size and structure of the pallet that you are wrapping, there is a large amount of bending and twisting involved in making sure that the entire pallet is wrapped thoroughly. Even with orderly and square pallets, hand wrapping requires that an employee walk around in circles which can cause dizziness. The amount of physical work involved with stretch wrapping a pallet by hand often takes a lot of energy that employees will need throughout the day. Upgrading to a stretch wrapping machine can greatly reduce the amount of labor required to wrap a pallet which will ultimately retain the health, energy, and safety of your employees.

Reduce the cost of work-related injuries by calling Best Packaging for a consultation to introduce a stretch wrapper into your manufacturing process today. (888) 930 BEST

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