Welcome to the November 1st Warehouse & Logistics News. With just a few weeks to Christmas, the race is on to deliver the goods in Britain’s warehouses and distribution centres. But if you don’t pay attention to the essentials of safety, your business is at risk.

A good place to learn how to make your warehouse safer is the 2016 SEMA Safety Conference, taking place on Thursday 3rd November at the National Motorcycle Museum in Birmingham, to which W&LN is a media partner. If you can’t go, don’t worry – we published our SEMA Safety Conference Supplement in our last issue, 15th October. You can see the digital version on our website.

You can also read up on warehouse safety in this issue. Start with our cover article about door specialists Hörmann leading the way in the loading bay with the launch of the Wheelblocker, a new piece of safety equipment that locks lorries and trailers in place until the process is complete. The HSE estimates 15% of all workplace transport injuries happen during unloading and loading, many of them when drivers leave bays too early. The launch of the MWB Wheel- Blocking system follows Hörmann’s IMHX 2016 Design4Safety Award for their Safety Light Grille.

Warehousing and logistics professionals are highly skilled at reducing operating and material costs and cutting waste. In this issue Brambles, the worldwide logistics company that owns CHEP and IFCO, are contributing their expertise at the highest level by signing a three-year agreement to support the Global FoodBanking Network and help drive efficiency in food banks worldwide. Meanwhile PPS, the returnable transit packaging producers are helping to make a difference in reducing packaging waste in the construction industry by taking part in the Circular Living exhibition.

Staying with reducing waste, warehousing and logistics is a large-scale user of lead-acid batteries, but many operations could do better in recouping costs when it comes to disposing of batteries. We interview Miles Freeman of Aurelius Environmental, the buyers and processors of scrap lead-acid batteries, who have developed a radical new technology which promises to change the way batteries are recycled when it goes live. In the meantime Aurelius are putting value back into battery recycling by offering companies in this sector a better deal for scrap batteries.

Finally, training is the best overall way to improve workplace performance and professional skills in this industry have been given a boost with UKWA’s new Warehouse Manager Certificate of Professional Competence, launched in September in conjunction with Logistics Learning Alliance. In a separate move, UKWA and the LLA are also working together to provide a standard for warehouse supervisors, to be introduced next spring. We’ll keep you informed.