One of the most overlooked areas of warehouse layout is safety guarding for people and for the storage products themselves. The question isn’t if you are going to incur damage to your rack storage system, it’s when.

Almost every warehouse will experience some level of damage based on the level of complexity of the building and storage layout, experience of lift drivers, aisle width, type of lift, type of product, etc.

There are many products that can provide protection against damage. Here are some safety tips to keep in mind for prevention:

  1. Consider installing pallet rack guarding.

    The incremental cost of using pallet rack guarding will typically pay for itself fairly quickly by preventing more costly damage to the structural
    components of the system.
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  2. Utilize floor mounted column protection.

    Unless you are using self guided lifts that are highly unlikely to impact your rack system, you will need a barrier between your equipment and your pallet racks. Installing floor mounted column protectors can protect your racking from being damaged.

    To provide the most protection, protectors with internal anchors are preferred because they absorb the impact so that the pallet racks do not. It is much easier to replace guarding than it is to replace a pallet rack system.

    Though internal anchors tend to be more labor intensive, they don’t cause the damage to forklift wheels that exposed anchors do. This results in less time spent maintaining the wheels.
     
  3. Use full length end-of-aisle guarding.

    Full length end-of-aisle guarding in high traffic areas provides a visual and physical barrier to lift equipment. These areas, along with tunnels, are at greater risk of impact, so they are well worth protecting.
     
  4. Installing double highway rails.

    Double highway rails are used to separate operational areas where personnel and powered lift equipment operate in close proximity.

    Handrails may provide a visual deterrent in these areas, but highway rails are more likely to prevent major accidents.
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  5. Ensure transition points are well lit and clearly marked.

    Making sure that all transition points for lift equipment are well lit, visually clear, and marked appropriately helps even inexperienced operators clearly understand traffic patterns.
     
  6. Maintain a rigorous training program.

    A rigorous training program ensures all operators are qualified to operate their respective lift equipment and use its associated safety equipment.

By keeping these tips in mind, you can prevent damage to your racking and ensure that your operators are practicing safe driving procedures.

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