In a busy warehouse, it is not uncommon to have numerous pallet racks stacked high and filled with merchandise, supplies, and materials. Unfortunately, if these pallet racks are not properly positioned or overloaded, they can collapse. Should this happen, the accident can be very serious and cause multiple injuries to nearby workers. Therefore, it is essential a warehouse put in place safety measures to ensure pallet rack collapse does not happen. To learn how best to prevent these accidents from occurring, here are five tips to prevent pallet rack collapse. – Stor’d Storage
Allow Maximum Space for Aisles
In many instances where pallet racks collapse, it is due to them being struck by forklifts. In an effort to reduce the chances of this happening within your warehouse, it is best to have aisles that allow for maximum space for forklifts and workers to move about freely. When creating aisle width, take into account pallet overhang, traffic patterns, amount of traffic, and other factors. Also, do not simply use minimum aisle widths provided by forklift manufacturers, since they may be too narrow for your needs.
Install Rack Protection
Along with making sure the aisles in your warehouse are wide enough for everyone to stay safe, you can also decrease the chances of pallet rack collapse by installing various types of rack protection. A popular option due to it being inexpensive, easy to install, and a proven way to provide many levels of protection against collapse, various types can be used in virtually all types of warehouses. In most cases, companies opt for such types as floor-anchored, button-on, poly snap-on, or bolted steel. Whatever your preference, make sure you focus your efforts on end frames and corner columns, since these are considered the most vulnerable areas on pallet racks.
Beware of Overloading Pallet Racks
While pallet racks such as those from Brisbane Mobile RWC Company are made to withstand heavy loads, it is important to remember weight and load capacities exist for important reasons. If you regularly ignore these capacity limits, it is only a matter of time before your warehouse experiences a severe pallet rack collapse. To keep this from happening, there are several things you can do. To begin with, conduct daily visual inspections of your pallet racks. Should any beams appear to be buckled or damaged in any way, take immediate steps to lighten the load and address the problem. Also, if you use damaged pallets on your pallet racks or have loads where the weight is not evenly distributed, this too can lead to a pallet rack collapse.
Always Have Adequate Load Clearances
When installing pallet racks or making adjustments to allow for additional space, always make sure you have adequate load clearances for your forklift drivers. If you have tight clearances on your pallet racks, this makes it very difficult for forklift drivers to properly position pallets on the racks. As a result, they often wind up striking the pallet rack, creating a damaged rack that may collapse. Therefore, always take horizontal and vertical clearances into consideration. For horizontal clearances, standard 96″ wide beams usually give forklift drivers the clearance needed to properly position loads. As for vertical clearances, there should be an absolute minimum of six inches clearance between the top of a forklift driver’s load and the bottom of the next beam level, although more clearance is recommended.
Make Sure Pallet Racks are Correctly Installed
In many instances where an accident involves a pallet rack collapse, it is found that the pallet rack itself was not correctly installed. While pallet racks are not necessarily complex to put together, they nevertheless must be done so according to manufacturer guidelines and instructions. Therefore, when installing pallet racks, make sure those doing so are experienced and understand clearances and other related safety factors. In addition, always make sure that when pallet racks are installed, safety clips and locks are used on certain areas, especially teardrop beams. Since these beams can sometimes dislodge due to loading errors, having safety clips and locks in place will lessen the chances of this taking place. If you inspect your pallet racks and notice any clips or locks missing or improperly installed, correct this at once.
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