Warehouses are the delicate infrastructures in all sorts of corporate business or industries. It has crucial storage systems installed for controlled and efficient maintenance of products. Racking system in these warehouses acts as the primary storage unit where varied products of differentiated nature and origin are stored. So, safety of these warehouse racking systems is very important.
Different key factors to consider while maintaining warehouse are as follows:
- Use of personal protective equipment: The one operating the warehouse must use appropriate protective footwear, steel toe and sole as well as slip resistant shoes. Ear protector, protective helmets, safety gloves and glasses should be kept handy during the entire work.
- Appropriate use of forklift trucks: The forklift should be maintained in perfect condition along with correctly working maintenance siren, horn and warning light. It needs to be used wisely and skillfully under surveillance and operation through skilled manpower.
- Adequate signage: The different operational areas, safety areas, evacuation routes and doors, machinery areas, bathrooms, warehouse plans; everything needs to be marked well.
- Safety elements in warehouse: A safe warehouse needs to include well operating smoke detectors, fire alarm systems, emergency lights, first aid kit, defibrillators and video cameras.
- Control, maintenance and periodic replacement: In order to practice perfect warehouse management, a safer warehouse installation and relocation is not enough. Over the time, routined control, maintenance as well as replacement need to be commissioned for allround warehouse safety.
- Staff training and advice: People are the key that enable us to have a completely safe warehouse; their initial training, the advice received by the company and their day-to-day behavior will ensure that all of the above key factors are fulfilled and that we have a warehouse and storage systems in excellent conditions.
Warehouse racking risk
The profitability of a company largely depends on the storage solution installed and optimum operational capacity. Implementing the right industrial racking system in the warehouse is essential to maximize productivity.
Different warehouse racking risks are as follows:
- Problems in the course of design or installation of the industrial racking.
- Modification of original characteristics of the industrial racking.
- Unit load problems.
- Collisions or impacts with the installation.
- Inadequate lighting throughout the installation.
- Inadequate width of the warehouse walkways.
- Excessive speed or dangerous driving by operators.
Preventive measures on industrial racking
The different preventive protection components on the industrial racking systems:
- Upright protector: This passive protection accessory on the racking must be installed in optimum height at least in transit aisles, tunnels or dispatch areas.
- Safety pins: Safety pins are individual elements that prevent accidental displacement of the beam. These are placed on the connector that joins the beam to the upright.
- Safety backtops: Different safety accessories like mesh panels, support bars and support acts as the prevention measures for racking that can either be single or double, and its main function is to prevent the falling of the pallet from racks due to any inappropriate maneuver. In contrast, the rear backstops are not applicable for pallet positioning.
OSHA on warehouse racking safety
The standards that the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) sets for warehouse racking are focused on generating a safer working environment. OSHA warehouse regulation for warehouse racking safety are stated below:
- “Sufficient safe clearances shall be allowed for aisles, at loading docks, through doorways where mechanical handling equipment are used and wherever turns or passage must be made. Proper marks on permanent aisles and passageways should be made.”
- “Storage of material shall not create a hazard. The bags, containers, bundles, etc., stored in tiers shall be stacked, blocked, interlocked and limited in height to make them stable and secure against any sorts of sliding or collapse.”
- “Storage areas shall be kept free from materials that can cause any accidents from tripping, fire, explosion, or pest harborage. Vegetation control will be exercised when necessary.”