Is your company’s warehouse racking system safe? If you treat the racking system at your warehouse like the shelving in your garage, you may want to reevaluate your racking storage safety. Racking systems are more than just placing boxes on shelves.
Storage racks support different-sized products and should be loaded with safety in mind. Otherwise, loading a rack improperly could cause the rack to collapse, resulting in costly product damages or serious injuries to employees.
You can prevent storage disasters by ensuring your racking system is safe. Use the following tips to keep your warehouse’s racking system safe.
Choose Your Warehouse Racks Carefully
When you decide to organize the storage in your warehouse, you can choose from a variety of racks, such as carbon flow racks or high-density, drive-in racks. Each rack can come with various components installed to improve efficiency and convenience. If you don’t select the right type of racking system for your operation, you may incur costly damages.
Some factors to consider in your rack design include the following:
- Handling method: Consider what type of handling equipment or vehicle you will use to stack your shelves, such as a forklift or truck. Some vehicles may require more space and height than others.
- Storage area: Your racking system should accommodate the seismic space available in your warehouse. Carefully measure aisle width and shelf clearance to ensure enough space to safely fit equipment between racks.
- Product: Along with the dimensions of your product and your handling methods, consider the turn rate of your products. If your warehouse has a large amount of inventory with a high turn rate, you will need a racking system that can support heavier weights.
Keep in mind that the most expensive racks aren’t necessarily the safest or most efficient option for your warehouse. For instance, large stacking systems provide plenty of space, but they may take more floor space than necessary. If you have a small warehouse, larger racks will be too big for the area and may present some safety hazards. Take time to plan what type of racking will safely fit in your warehouse to prevent an accident.
Seek Professional Guidance
If you are organizing your company’s warehouse storage for the first time, consult a racking professional for safety tips specific to your space. Even if you are simply reorganizing your warehouse storage, a professional can offer valuable safety guidance.
Like other building elements, racking systems have strict code requirements. A rack professional can help you determine the best way to move, repair, or adjust racks to ensure the safety of your employees. Once you have a racking system installed, never adjust the original design before consulting a professional.
Don’t Overload Racks
A common safety hazard in warehouses is exceeding the racks’ weight capacity. Excessive weight on racks can cause damages or failure to the racks.
All rack equipment should have a label that displays the rack’s load capacity or maximum weight. Never exceed this capacity. You may want to keep documentation about how much weight each rack can handle and make the information easily accessible to employees. This information will provide your employees with a convenient reference to ensure they don’t overload a rack accidently.
Conduct Rack Safety Training with Employees
Train employees on proper safety procedures for your racking system. Forklift drivers should understand how to operate the forklift safely and how to load the pallets safely onto the racking system. Drivers should place each pallet squarely onto the rack and avoid bumping into the rack.
Your training should also include a reporting strategy to notify necessary personnel of any damages or injury during the storage process. Damaged racks should not be used until repaired. Training should also involve a thorough inspection of your racking system each year.
Keep your employees safe by incorporating these safety guidelines. If you need additional information regarding racks or want to improve your racking system, contact QC Material Handling Equipment.