pallet racking

Mistakes that people make with pallet racking

Easy-to-maintain pallet racks are found in warehouses around the globe. Whatever the type, safety issues are often similar.

pallet racking

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1 Don’t climb the rack

Sometimes people climb pallet racks to save time. While it may be tempting, this activity is extremely dangerous. Racks may have broken planks, nails may protrude or fractured stringers may puncture hands.

2 Don’t overload

To ensure worker safety, you must know your pallet rack’s capacity prior to loading it. Be sure that the rack can sustain your load, especially in the upper levels. Even better, keep the heaviest loads in bays nearer the ground. In mixed storage, the lightest pallets go in high bays, and the heaviest ones lower down.

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Read more about racking configuration here:

pallet racking

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3 Steer clear of pallet rack damage

Pallet racks may endure overloading, collisions with heavy forklifts and other abuses. Because of this, even super tough racks need cautious handling.

Preventing pallet rack damage requires training forklift drivers, keeping the warehouse clutter-free, widening aisles and regular rack inspections, to name but a few. It is advisable to use steel guard rails, upright frame protectors and bollards.

Also, bear in mind your rack’s environment. For example, outdoor racks have different standards, while racks on inadequate floors may be compromised.

4 Height-to-depth ratio

In pallet rack design, people generally focus on the simple parts (the capacity of beams, etc.) to guarantee a reliable rack system. However, many overlook the height-to-depth ratio.

The Rack Manufacturers’ Institute (RMI) describes this as the ratio of the distance from the floor to the top beam level divided by the depth of the frame — it can’t exceed 6-to-1. When measures such as base plates, special anchors and overhead rack ties are required, you should consult professional rack engineers.

5 Avoid unsafe rack loading

Pallet rack loads are more than just simple structure versus weight. Knowing the shape, dimensions and size of the load is absolutely vital for safe, effective storage. To steer clear of unsafe or incorrect rack loading, consider the weight of the load, whether it will be placed on a wire deck, how it sits, and what factors might impact capacity.

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