5 Rack System Tips To Maintain A Safer Workplace

Any seasoned warehouse manager or employee, knows that most rack disasters stem from forklift impact, overloading, or lack of proper training.  We have some effective, quick prevention tips that you can start applying today.  We’ll supply the safety prevention know-how so you can concentrate on being productive.

1. Rack Guarding Equipment

We believe that rack safety starts with prevention equipment.  If you’re a hockey player, you wear a helmet and body guard pads.  If you play football, you wouldn’t go up against a 300 lb defenseman without a helmet and pads.  If you’re in the marines, you wear body armor.  It’s common sense to protect the system that gets you across the goal line.

Rack Upright Guarding – Corners and ends of your rack bays are most likely to take a hit – guard them with post protectors and end of aisle protectors.

Floor Angle Guide – Swerving forklifts in tight aisles cause damage to the interior structure of your system.  Using floor angle guides keep traffic away from critical supports.

Rack Back & Bay Guards – Wherever there’s pedestrians and pickers, fall hazards remain a large concern.  Keep product and pallets from falling off your rack with wire mesh rack back guards and rack safety netting.  A relatively inexpensive solution to a common hazard.

2. Rack Safety Training

Know how your rack will be used and train others to follow the rules.  Everyone in the warehouse should have thorough training – including routine refresher courses – on the structural build of your rack, capacities, proper loading, maintaining, and what to do if an accident happens or issues are found.

W.W. Cannon’s rack experts will perform onsite training for new rack systems we install.  Our purpose is to educate all employees on the necessary details to keep everyone safe.

3. Safely Manage Pallet Loads

Trained workers should know exactly how much load weight is being stored and exactly what the capacity limit is per level.  If they don’t know, then keep them away from your forklifts!  Loading more onto a beam level than is required can damage the structural integrity of the unit and could bring down the whole system.

Have capacities clearly labeled! According to the RMI/ANSI, all rack units should display a plaque with the capacity and maximum weight allowed.

4. Consult An Expert

Rack systems are made from many different components – beams, uprights, supports, lock mechanisms, decking – it all forms a large product support system which requires being used and maintained as it was originally designed.  Any tweaks or adjustments made – even an adjustment to a beam level – could affect the integrity of the entire system and potentially lead to accidents or a dangerous collapse.  A rack system expert understands this and will provide consultation to ensure the safety of your people and operations.

If your rack was ‘inherited’ or used, contact us.  If you’re within our service area, we’ll come in and determine the make and health of your system.  We’ll supply you with some basic knowledge to help you maintain a safe work environment.  When in doubt – call us out.

5. Rack Inspections

Routine inspections discover issues ahead of time to prevent accidents.  Over many years of use, anchors loosen, beams bend, and uprights take structural damage.  All these issues add up over time and can wreak havoc in your warehouse.

In a facility filled with hundreds of bays, the only way to stay on top of safety is with routine inspections and maintenance.  Schedule a rack expert to come in and take inventory of your rack system health.  You’ll receive documentation on what needs to be immediately repaired, replaced, or areas to just keep an eye on for now.  This puts the control where it should be – back in your hands.

Internal inspections should also be part of a monthly or even weekly routine.  Look for misuse or damage, record it, and get an expert to take a look or maintenance crew out to fix the rack right away.  A system may stand for years with accumulated minor damage, and then one hit, or overextending maximum load, could bring the entire system down.

Working Smarter To Keep You Safer

By incorporating the 5 tips above, you’ll be equipped with about the safest work environment possible for your rack system.  Our rack experts are here and waiting to assist you.  If you need anything – even just to ask a few questions – we’d love to hear from you.

To speak to us directly, call us today at 800-442-3061.

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