Safety considerations for heavy duty racking

Posted in Home & Garden

Safety considerations for heavy duty racking

Heavy duty racking systems are a space and money saver in large warehouses and commercial centres, but, because of the number and size of the loaded goods, they can pose health and safety risks if not operated correctly. Managers have to hire a health and safety experts and find out what measures need to be taken to reduce the risk of accidents involving racking systems. Here are some simple tips and tricks that anyone can understand and that can ensure smooth day-to-day operations within your company.


Do not buy used racks


Buying second hand racks can be quite tempting, especially if you are on a budget, but this decision can cause many health and safety issues. Most of the time, warehouses dispose of their racks when they are old, damaged and no longer comply with industry requirements. For example, pallet racking systems might have loose parts. Second hand racks can break easily, which puts your employees and physical goods at risk. Even though new racks cost more, you can rely on them for longer and you get a quality guarantee. High quality storage solutions are built to last, but you should still inspect them from time to time to make sure that they are in good condition. Pay attention to the rack frame, because if it breaks all your goods will be damaged. Call an experienced contractor to check the racks as soon as you notice signs of damage. Do not attempt to fix them yourself, because you could get hurt.


Respect the storage capacity


Every type of racking system is built for a specific purpose and thus has different storage capacity. In some cases, such as the one of heavy duty cantilever racking, the weight limit is very high and you can store many loads, but you should still check how much the rack can hold. Overloading racks is very dangerous, not only because they can break and collapse on your goods, but also because they can seriously hurt the staff operating them. Do not try to force items onto the racks if they do not fit. If you cannot find the original instructions for the racking system, then contact the supplier from which you bought it.


Instruct your staff


All types of racking systems are designed to make it easier for staff to load and unload goods, thus increasing productivity. However, if this is your first time using heavy duty racking solutions, you should hire someone to instruct the staff on how to use them. Climbing on racks, during or between loading times, can be extremely dangerous and should be always avoided. If you are using tall racks that require forklifts, make sure these forklifts are operated only by qualified personnel. You should also consider putting up safety signs to warn everyone about collision risks. Ideally, the area around the racks should be as clean and organised as possible and the floor should be cleaned with a non-slippery substance.