If you are a small distributor who needs to install pallet racking into your warehouse to house your inventory until it ships out, then it is very important that your employees know how to safely work with the new pallet racks. While pallet racks are a wonderful way to get more inventory in your warehouse and keep it off of the floor, they do introduce a few new hazards into your warehouse that your staff needs to be aware of. Thankfully, there are many things your employees can do to work safely with racked pallets and their structures, including each of these five tips:
Safety Tip #1: Never Climb on Pallet Racks or Stand on Their Shelves
Even the strongest pallet rack systems are not designed to have people climbing on them or standing on their shelves. Your employees need to know that they should never do either of these things. They should always be retrieving stock off of the racks using a forklift.
Safety Tip #2: Never Place Plywood on Pallet Rack Shelves
Due to the risk of fire, you should never place plywood sheets over your pallet rack's shelves. Doing this can cause a fire to spread upward through your racking system.
Safety Tip #3: Bolt Your Pallet Rack System to the Floor
It is vital that you bolt your pallet rack system into the floor of your warehouse. While you might not believe it, pallet racks can fall over if they are not securely bolted into place. You should use long lag bolts and drill them into your warehouse's concrete slab.
Safety Tip #4: Never Overload Pallet Racks with Too Much Inventory
Even the sturdiest pallet rack systems have their weight limits. Exceeding the weight limit can result in injuries and death to your employees, and it can result in permanent damage to the pallet racks as well. For these reasons, it is important that your staff never overload your pallet racks.
Safety Tip #5: Remove Any Damaged or Dented Pallet Racking from Service
Finally, it is vital that you remove any dented or damaged pallet racking materials from service as soon as you notice they are damaged. Broken or dented pallet racking sections can collapse and kill your employees because the rack will lack its necessary structural integrity. You should instruct your employees to never attempt to repair broken pallet racks or unbend dents, instead, the pallet rack should be replaced.