Pallet rack systems are commonly used in warehouses for the storage of palletized materials. Due to the nature of work in company warehouses, pallet racks are often subject to abuse. Not only can pallet racks be overloaded with materials, but they can also be hit by heavy forklifts. When pallet racks become damaged, they can lose their strength and structural integrity, causing a safety hazard for employees and a potential financial setback if products are damaged. Learn ways to prevent damage to pallet rack systems for a safer, more productive warehouse.

1. Subject Employees to Frequent Training

Most accidents in the warehouse can be avoided when employees are properly trained to use forklifts and pallet rack systems. Employees should undergo training on a regular basis to ensure that everyone knows the right procedures to prevent problems. Employees should understand speed limits, how to make turns around pallet racks, and how much each rack is able to hold.

2. Enforce Cleanliness and Organization

Chaos in the warehouse can occur when employees are not clean and organized. As forklifts must already operate in a confined space,  it's important to ensure that there  are no other items in the area that are not supposed to be there, such as pallets stacked in the aisles and other dangerous obstructions.

3. Maximize Aisle Space

Larger aisles mean more room to maneuver forklifts and products. It also means a significantly lower risk of forklifts coming into contact with pallet racks. While it may be inconvenient to reconfigure pallet rack aisles, widening the aisles provides many benefits including a safer work zone. The aisles should be large enough to allow a forklift to back away from one aisle without hitting into the aisle behind it.

4. Have Pallet Rack Systems Inspected Regularly

Over time, pallet racks can succumb to damages. To ensure that the pallet rack system is still structurally sound, have the system professionally inspected from companies like Certified Handling Systems on a regular basis. During a routine inspection, the pallet rack system will be visually inspected for weakened components or components that require repair or replacement. It's critical to follow-up with these repairs or replacements to ensure that the system is safe for employees.

5. Install Guardrails at the Ends of the Rows

One of the most common points of damage on pallet rack systems is at the ends. The easiest way to protect the ends of the racks is to install guardrails or pallet protectors. Guardrails help to protect pallet rack systems from potential impacts from forklifts and can help prevent a dangerous rack collapse.

If you have a warehouse that uses pallet rack systems, it's vital to protect your investment and employees. For more information about industrial pallet racks, contact your local supplier.