Pallet Racking Safety – Keeping your warehouse compliant

Pallet racking is just like any other warehouse equipment. Which means that regular maintenance is a standard requirement.

New or Used pallet racking

If you have recently purchased pallet racking for your warehouse, you’d be forgiven for thinking that it’s in for life. But this isn’t the case. Despite the fact that it has been installed by specialists, like all types of equipment in the workplace, pallet racking will need regular maintenance.

Any equipment that receives high volume use is subject to wear and tear, and pallet racking is no different. Over time, the nuts and bolts that are used in assembling racking can work loose, leading to issues with the structure. Any loss can lead to your pallet racking becoming unsafe. Too many over time and there is a serious risk.

In a similar way, warehouses are busy places. Despite all safety precautions, people do rush, and accidents occur. Forklifts accidentally striking or running into posts are a regular hazard in a busy warehouse. But any damage to a post that supports pallet racking can cause the structural soundness of the post to become compromised. This increases the likelihood of a collapse of the entire installation

The possibility of damage or injury to people caused by any of these types of events means that a strict regime of prevention, inspection and repair needs to be implemented by warehouse managers, to maintain your pallet racking in good working order.

Maintaining your Warehouse Equipment is the Law

As warehouse managers should know, UK Health & Safety legislation does apply to pallet racking. In legislation, it is classified as “work equipment”. It’s therefore in the interest of businesses and warehouse managers, and to everybody working in your warehouse, that all the necessary measures are taken to ensure a safe working environment.

Here’s a few tips that may help.

Yearly External Inspections

A good start is to get a qualified inspector to visit your warehouse and inspect your storage racking after installation. This should be carried out by experts, to SEMA standards to ensure that any problems are identified straight away, so that they can be rectified. Once any problems have been dealt with, or if the inspection reveals no other issues, you can be confident that your pallet racking conforms to official requirements. An inspection of your warehouse racking should ensure the following:-

  • The Pallet Racking installation meets all current Health and Safety requirements
  • Any unsafe components are identified and repaired
  • Damage risks from mechanical handling equipment are identified and mitigated
  • Any potential risks of injury to personnel caused by the continuous use of damaged racking are identified

Although properly trained internal staff can carry out pallet racking inspections, it is to the benefit of your company (and insurance premium) that an inspection by an independent qualified inspector takes place. The minimum requirement for any subsequent external inspections should be at least once every twelve months.

Regular Internal Inspections

A monthly inspection, carried out by a trained member of staff, is standard practice for many warehouse companies. These inspections should help you to make sure that any problems are dealt with quickly and the danger of accident is minimised.

Log all Inspections

It is important to log all inspections in a designated document, so that over time a complete record is available of when and by whom the inspection was carried out, and the results of the inspection. Details of any maintenance work that you have carried out should also be logged. This can be used as evidence of good practice when you are dealing with your insurance company, or when a Health and Safety inspector pays a visits.

Warehouse Lighting

A poorly lit warehouse is dangerous. It is vital that all your lighting is of good quality and up to the standard required to maintain a good working environment.

Maintain other equipment

Forklifts, hoists and other mechanical lifting equipment used in conjunction with your pallet racking needs to be regularly maintained and inspected. This will ensure its efficient operation, but will also mitigate risks of accidents which can also adversely affect your pallet racking.

These are just a few of the points you need to cover in ensuring that your warehouse is as safe as possible. At Monarch Shelving, we are always happy to offer you the benefit of our expertise in dealing with the Health & Safety issues involved in pallet racking installations.

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Monarch Shelving Ltd
Unit F,Daltry Street, Oldham, Lancashire, United KingdomOL1 4AB
Tel: 0161 627 3444 or 0161 622 0022 | Fax: 01706 880520