Archive for the ‘racking safety’ Category

Posted on: June 30th, 2020 by admin No Comments

The Importance of Pallet Racking Inspections

Even if you have just had new pallet racking installed in your warehouse, or you have had the same pallet racking for years, it is equally vital to have the equipment inspected. Here we discuss the importance of pallet racking inspections that all warehouse managers and businesses need to be aware of.

Just like any other equipment, even if the pallet racking is of the highest standard, you need to be realistic and know that over time you should expect general wear and tear. Even though pallet racking is extremely durable and robust, damage can still occur. Nuts and bolts can become loose which, if not detected early can lead to the foundations of the structure being unsteady. This could cause potentially dangerous problems in the future. Damage can also happen if the pallet racking has undertaken any physical hits from machinery such as forklifts accidentally hidden the racking.

Why do you need a pallet racking inspection?  

As part of the Health and Safety at Work Act of 1974, it is stated that “all adjustable pallet racking falls under the category of work equipment, which must be maintained and inspected on a regular basis”

The Provision & Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER) of 1998 also states that all pallet racking shelving must meet the standards it sets out. This is in addition to the HSE guideline on Warehousing and Storage, HSG 76, states that “all racking systems should be of good mechanical construction, of sound material, adequate strength and installed and maintained in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.”

The inspections will observe the condition of the pallets, the positioning and types of loads stored on the pallet, the condition and type of floor the racking is fixed on plus much more. These are just some of the areas that are covered in the inspection. Once the inspection is done, a report will be issued with any recommendations or necessary actions.

By carrying out regular inspections, any issues can be dealt with head-on in a timely manner, reducing the risk of any accidents or further damage that could be costly to a business. By keeping the racking to the highest standards will also reduce the maintenance costs. It also helps towards creating a safer workplace and highlights to all warehouse employers that the business promotes health and safety in the workplace. This can considerably increase employees’ efficiency, happiness at work, and productivity if they know the equipment they are using is safe.

How often should the inspections take place? 

As a bare minimum, an expert inspection should take place annually. However, this is not the only inspection a warehouse needs to carry out. As stated in the EU Directive EN 15635, in addition to the annual expert inspection, internal inspections should also be undertaken on a weekly basis. Doing these regular inspections ensures that the racking remains fit for purpose and safe to use.

How do the inspections work? 

Warehouse inspections use a traffic light system in order to highlight any issues. These are called “damage categories”. Here is a description of the classifications:

Green Risk- The pallet racking system items that are damaged are within the limitations of BS EN 15635.

Amber Risk- The items are damaged beyond the limitations of BS EN15635. The rack should be offloaded as soon as possible within 4 weeks. The pallet racking system should not be used until the repair work has been completed.

Red Risk- Serious damage has occurred that are well beyond the limitations of BS EN 15635. If Red Risk occurs, the racking must be offloaded immediately and isolated from future use until the repair work has been carried out.

Who should do the inspections? 

A Person Responsible for Racking Safety (PRRS) should be nominated at every warehouse. Their responsibilities include carrying out the weekly internal inspections.

Although a technically competent person internally can review the pallet racking, it can often be beneficial to use an external company to undertake these inspections. They look at the warehouse environment and condition of the pallet racking with completely fresh eyes. They will provide you with impartial advice, will have a team of experienced inspectors that are used to inspecting a range of different warehouses and will give the warehouse’s PRRS a comprehensive report that highlights any damaged or missing components and/or structural imperfections. This level of detailed inspection and feedback can be invaluable to the management of a busy warehouse.

Unfortunately, there are many accidents that take place in warehouses, some of which are caused by the equipment they are using. Prevention is key. Even if you don’t believe there is anything wrong with pallet racking, having regular inspection reduces the risk of injury and can help the racking last longer as it is well maintained.

By understanding these potential risks and having pallet racking inspections on a regular basis can help minimise the damage caused, fix any problems quickly and therefore minimise the risk of any serious damage or industry to equipment or staff considerably, making it a safer workplace.

Here at Logical Storage, we can offer high-quality mezzanine flooring for your business and are ready to discuss your warehouse storage requirements. For more information visit our website or call us on 0845 689 1300.

Posted on: May 29th, 2020 by admin No Comments

Ultimate Safety Tips for Your Warehouse

Working in a warehouse can pose numerous health and safety risks. If these are not controlled effectively, the results can be catastrophic. Here we share some ultimate safety tips for your warehouse.

  • Keep all areas of the warehouse clean and free of any rubbish or potential obstacles
  • Use protective clothing including correct footwear, hard hats, gloves and high vis vests
  • Use shelving correctly. Keep heavier items at the bottom with lighter products on the higher shelves
  • Have a one-way system and pedestrian crossings down the aisles to avoid accidents. Ensure these routes are clearly marked on the floor
  • Ensure anyone operating equipment has received sufficient training
  • Empty rubbish bins as soon as they are full and do not let them overflow
  • Make sure all emergency exits are clear and have a thorough evacuation strategy in place
  • Ensure first aid supplies are easy to access
  • Have a robust procedure in place for the reporting on any accidents or potential safety
  • Know the weight restrictions for racking and shelving before placing any items on their
  • Get racking inspected on a regular basis
  •  Ensure everyone maintains speed limits when operating machinery
  • Use mirrors where possible to aid driving and help drivers to see around corners
  • Undertake regular maintenance of vehicles
  • Have sufficient signage around the warehouse for speed limits, emergency exits and key policies. Ensure they are kept up to date and can be understood by everyone.
  • Avoid the need for manual handling as much as possible
  • When people are operating lifting equipment, ensure they know the maximum safe working loads (SWL)
  • Carry out fire drills regularly
  • Test fire alarms weekly and have designated fire wardens.
  • Train staff to load pallets correctly
  • Inspect pallets before you to ensure they are good enough to continue using. They should not have any cracks, be loose or have any protruding nails.
  • Do not exceed 5mph if using a forklift
  • Do not let anyone under the age of 18 operate a forklift
  • Use anti-slip paint to create a safer surface
  • Ensure members of staff can easily access the equipment they need to carry out their dog without causing them strain or potentially an injury.
  • Never climb on racking.
  • Load pallets correctly to ensure they are stable. Use wrapping to help this.
  • Clear down workstations and remove rubbish after every shift

Carrying out these tips not only leave you with a safer working environment, but it also can as a result increase staff happiness, staff productivity and overall efficiency. The majority of these tips are extremely easy to implement and maintain with good organisation and management.

Here at Logical Storage, we can offer high-quality mezzanine flooring for your business and are ready to discuss your warehouse storage requirements. For more information visit our website or call us on 0845 689 1300.

Posted on: April 30th, 2020 by admin No Comments

How to Optimise Your Warehouse

Customer expectations continue to grow. An increase in online shopping makes people want access to a huge range of products quickly and easily. With many retailers offering next day delivery and free returns to match these high expectations, the need for warehouses to be optimised has never been greater. Here we discuss how to optimise a warehouse.

Are your products placed on racks correctly?

This may seem simple but it is surprising how many warehouses may not be placing their items correctly on the racking. The opening heights in your racks should get smaller or bigger depending on the load it is holding. As a rule of thumb, openings should be more than 6-inches taller than the load itself, allowing easy removal using a forklift.

Adjusting the rack height accordingly allows warehouse owners to completely customise the layout to specifically suit their products.

Consider the popularity of each SKU in your warehouse. An effective strategy can be to place slower-moving products in shorter rack locations. This can work well as the SKUs will not be picked as regularly, meaning that they do not need as much space.

Have you chosen the right racking system?

There are many racking systems to choose from and it’s important that you match the racking system to your individual business needs. You need to consider both the weight and size of your inventory and ensure the racking systems are optimised for this. The higher the number of beams in the racking system, the more weight it can carry. However, it also means there is less space between each one. It is, therefore, a balancing act to figure out the ideal racking system for your goods.

Are you optimising your space?

Warehouses have plenty of space. However, usually, this space is height and many warehouses do not make the most of this. A large proportion of your spare space will be higher up. Therefore, mezzanine flooring should be considered for those seeking more space to smooth their operations. They are great places to have additional storage or even office space, saving the floor level space for inventory only.

Are your aisles correct?

It can be tempting to narrow your aisles in order to fit more in, however, you need to consider this carefully. By doing so, you are limiting the space between the aisles. This can have a negative impact on efficiency if people struggle to manoeuvre through the aisles. Although you need to fit all your stock in the warehouse, you also need to ensure that the process is smooth and the warehouse remains a safe environment for all employees.

If you are struggling to make the most out of the space you have, then consider the points discussed above. Asking yourself these points may reduce the need to relocate or expand your warehouse by ensuring you are using all your current space to its greatest potential. Optimising your warehouse takes some planning, however, when done correctly you will end up with much more efficient operations which in turn can help you increase your revenue and output.

Posted on: February 28th, 2020 by admin No Comments

Pallet Racking Safety- Warehouse Safety Tips

Pallet racking is a great addition to any warehouse as they are a great storage solution and can improve efficiency and productivity. However, warehouse managers should be aware of measures regarding pallet racking safety. Issues can occur if the racking is damaged. These include collisions, incidents involving forklifts or overloaded pallets.

Here we discuss 7 ways you can improve the pallet racking safety in your warehouse

Always Use Suitable Forklifts

Forklifts should be suitable for the warehouse. Although the decision may be price-driven, a consideration should to the pallet contents should be given. Factors include the height and type of racking as well as aisle width. All of these factors will impact which forklift is suitable.

Handle With Care

Ensure all members of staff treat the pallet racking with care and use equipment in the correct manner. Place pallets evenly and squarely on the rack beams and remove damaged pallets from service.

Staff Training

Before anyone starts working with pallet racking in the warehouse, always ensure they have undertaken sufficient and detailed health and safety training which covers all aspects of how to correctly work with pallet racking.

Don’t Overload Pallets

Staff need to be aware of what the load capacity of the racking is and never exceed this. Overload pallet racking is asking for trouble and there is a reason why there are limits in place. Not only can it be dangerous for the employee, but it could also end up damaging equipment and products.

Keep Aisles Clear

Check for any obstructions in aisles as these can easily cause forklift collisions and other accidents.

Install Rack Protection

Invest in-rack protection to prevent damage from forklift collisions. Forklifts are heavy and can easily cause structural damage. To avoid any costs of damage or potential injuries, rack protection is a good option to help absorb the shock and impact of a potential collision.

Health and Safety Checks

Ensure safety information signs regarding the racking are visible and up to date. Implement clear processes for staff to follow in the event of an accident. Even though accidents cannot always be foreseen, an efficient accident process can help prevent any re-occurrences.

Carry out regular pallet racking inspections. Although damage may not be visible, the reassurance from a professional will provide peace of mind and will also keep your racking in the best condition for longer.

Ensuring your pallet racking remains in a safe condition is an ongoing task. Not only can damaged racking be harmful to employees, but it can also result in damaged inventories and associated costs. Implementing thorough safety measures can reduce this risk and therefore should be a priority for all warehouses that use pallet racking.

Here at Logical Storage, we can offer high-quality storage solutions, racking inspections and mezzanine flooring for your business. Call us on 0845 689 1300 for more information.

Posted on: May 14th, 2019 by admin No Comments

How to keep your workplace safe using racking

A lack of understanding of Health & Safety laws coupled with practical dangers such as heavy loads and overloading can produce plenty of risks to your business. Often however, the key to staying safe is as simple as choosing the right form of racking system and taking due care when choosing a supplier.

The dangers to businesses in the workplace
There are many dangers within a workplace. These can vary in businesses depending on what the environment is like. During 2017/18 a total of 144 workers were killed in fatal accidents and more than 650,000 non-fatal injuries were reported. This poses a huge risk to businesses as it can have bad consequences such as workers taking time off to recover or even in the worst case a worker being killed resulting in fines and even legal action.

How can racking help?
Racking is a great way to stop and prevent these dangers from occurring. This is because it is a highly-effective storage solution which enables for easy organisation and allows for heavy objects to be stored away safely. Saying this, racking will only be an effective solution if it is maintained properly, hence why it is incredibly important to have annual inspections.

Initial installation
Before even thinking about Health & Safety or maintenance for your racking, you need to ensure that you are selecting the right supplier and installer to get the job done. If your racking is faulty then it could have a negative impact on not only your productivity, but it can have a large impact on your Health & Safety standards.

Requirements on the racking
All manufacturers of warehouse racking are obliged to provide the safe loading data on the racking system, stating its maximum load and the maximum number of items that can be loaded at once.

This is to ensure that the users of the racking systems know how to load it properly so that it coincides with health and safety regulations. Failure meet these standards can have detrimental effects as it could cause racking and pallets to fall on the driver of a forklift or anyone stood underneath it.

Rules around the racking
In addition to the points mentioned above, your own housekeeping is essential to keeping your racking safe and in turn aiding the overall Health & Safety standards of your business. Keep workways clear for both forklifts and workers and have systems in place to collect and disperse rubbish as a minimum. Adopt a “see it – sort it” approach for maximum impact.

Inspections and maintenance
Inspections of your warehouse racking are a must as the HSE recommend having annual inspections by a SEMA approved racking inspector so that you are can highlight any problems and so you can stay up to date with any new legalisation.

This is where we can help. Here at Logical Storage we can offer high-quality racking inspections for your business and discuss your racking requirements. Click here for more details http://www.logicalstorage.co.uk/services/rack-inspection/ or call us on 0845 689 1300.

Posted on: December 28th, 2018 by admin No Comments

What causes racking damage?

Damage to the racking in your warehouse can have a devastating impact. Not only can it slow down your operations and cause damage to your stock, but it can also put your employees at serious risk of injury which in turn can spiral into financial loss and potentially damage to your reputation as a business. But how does racking damage occur in the first place? Here are a few common examples.

Vehicular damage
Warehouses are busy environments and while vehicles like forklifts are excellent tools in speeding up your operations and reaching areas that would be more challenging on foot, used incorrectly or without proper training they can pose serious hazards. Accidental collisions with racking systems are a common cause of breakages and while more serious incidents may be too hard to ignore, small bumps and knocks could go unnoticed but still do damage that compromises your systems.

Poor warehouse layout
While poor training of drivers can lead to collisions with racking, sometimes it is not the driver who is at fault. Instead cramped and poorly maintained areas that don’t utilize tools like coloured safety tape and notices or have poor housekeeping can result in drivers having to make tight maneuvers that can often end in collisions.

Overloading
The most common cause of racking failure is that of overloading. By calculating factors like frame size, beam size and depth we can work out exactly what the limit should be for weight on your racking. However, if advice is ignored and your racking becomes overloaded then structural damage is bound to occur at some point. It is important to make it clear to workers through both training and notices exactly what weight limits are.

Seek advice
The key to avoiding racking damage is to quickly identify faulty or damaged racking. By organising periodic reviews of your racking with a professional company you can quickly identify small signs of wear and tear before they develop into something much worse.

Logical Storage is highly skilled in spotting the often hard-to-find signs of racking degradation. We carry out regular reviews for a number of businesses helping them to keep their systems in good working order and to maintain their legal obligations under the Health & Safety Act.  To find out more please call us on 0845 689 1300.

Posted on: August 28th, 2018 by admin No Comments

Why you need to take racking damage seriously

Whether you are a large business operating in an industrial sized building, or a small operation with just a few employees, racking inspection and repair is absolutely essential to your business.

Damage to racking through poor placement of stock, damage by forklifts or other equipment can risk the integrity of your racking and put both your product and your employees at risk.

Time and time again, unsafe racking has resulted in catastrophic failures where racking has collapsed, hitting other structures and resulting in widespread damage to both systems and stock. This then results in equipment, storage systems and stock having to be replaced which means hours of wasted time and heavy costs incurred. Can your business afford the downtime?

Equally, there have also been plenty of cases of unsafe racking resulting in damage not just to stock but also employees who have been caught in the crossfire of a collapse. Should an employee be injured you could be liable under the Corporate Manslaughter and Homicide Act (2007).  An incident of this sort would not only be terrible for those involved but could also leave your business with a loss of reputation and having to divert your attention to lengthy, expensive legal issues.

The key question here is how can this be prevented? The number one way that you can prevent a racking collapse is to have regular inspections of your racking by a trained professional looking out for bent or damaged beams, loose attachments, overloading, corrosion, misalignments and more. Damage to racking can be difficult to spot unless you know what you are looking for which is why it is important to seek out experienced help.

Logical Storage is highly skilled in spotting the often hard-to-find signs of racking degradation. We carry out regular reviews for a number of businesses helping them to keep their systems in good working order and to maintain their legal obligations under the Health & Safety Act.  To find out more please call us on 0845 689 1300.

Posted on: March 30th, 2018 by admin No Comments

Racking and Health and Safety – what you need to know!

The Health and Safety Executive offer important guidance when it comes to keeping your employees safe. A failure to follow guidelines has historically seen business owners face large fines and legal damages when their actions, or inactions, have led to employees being injured.

Health and Safety guidelines should cover every aspect of your operations and racking is no exception. The most relevant advice for businesses utilizing racking is often the HSG76 Warehousing and storage: a guide to health and safety. This offers key information for managers and supervisors around health and safety in warehouses and storage facilities to help reduce injuries and improve occupational ill health targets set by the government.

One of the key points raised in the guidelines is the importance of having regular racking inspections carried out by trained experts. Racking needs to be properly maintained once it is installed and used properly. This means that it should never be overloaded or climbed upon (as is stressed in HSG76) and it is important to also guard it from damage by vehicles such as fork-lift trucks that use your warehouse.

Even the smallest amount of damage can have a big impact on your racking safety. Small fractures of hairline cracks can significantly impact the integrity of your racking and could lead to one or more of your employees being struck by falling objects or trapped under a collapsed structure.

With proper maintenance, racking is one of the most formidable types of storage that you can have and can make a huge impact on the productivity of your business. However, if handled badly and not regularly reviewed it can also slow down your operations and the day to day running of your business.

Logical Storage is highly skilled in spotting the often hard-to-find signs of racking degradation. We carry out regular reviews for a number of businesses, helping them to keep their systems in good working order and to maintain their legal obligations under the Health & Safety Act.  To find out more please call us on 0845 689 1300.

Posted on: December 21st, 2017 by admin No Comments

Start 2018 on the right foot with a full racking inspection

No matter how hard you may try, damage to racking is something which it is hard to defend against. While racking is not inherently flawed in any way (unless poorly set-up) it is, like any form of equipment, susceptible to human error and wear and tear over time.

Racking damage can occur in many ways; sometimes it happens during assembly. If a poorly trained or unqualified company installs or reassembles your racking, then they could make costly mistakes. They may overlook important factors such as how your racking will be used and what exactly will be stored. This may in turn then cause your racking to become overloaded and weaken over time, threatening your stock and the safety of your employees. Another way that racking can be damaged is through human error, such as when racking is impacted by vehicles like forklift trucks moving around the warehouse – even with the best training and the most proficient drivers, accidents like this can still happen and even a small chip or crack could cause equipment to fail.

In order for you to protect yourself, you need to work with highly competent suppliers and installers to deliver your racking. You also need to ensure that your employees know how best to access the racking and that they are careful to avoid collisions when in transit around your warehouse.

That said, no matter how hard you do prepare, mistakes can still be made, and they may even occur without your knowledge. For instance, if you overload your racking beyond its capacity then over time it may create pressure cracks or hairline cracks. These cracks aren’t immediately obvious to you or your staff, but they could be reducing your load bearing capacity by around 40% which may hamper your productivity. This is one of the key reasons why it is vitally important to have regular reviews of your racking.

Continuing to use broken racking can reduce your productivity, yes, but there are even graver dangers too. Should an employee be injured by racking collapsing on them or should they be otherwise injured in any shape or form then you could be liable, as their employer, under the Corporate Manslaughter and Homicide Act (2007).

Logical Storage has a team of experienced specialists who can inspect racking, make recommendations on how to prevent damage as well as performing remedial works such as racking repair to damaged equipment.

So don’t delay, book yourself in for a racking inspection at the beginning of the year and sleep soundly knowing that your warehouse is operating at maximum efficiency and in the safest way possible. Contact us on 0845 689 1300 to find out more or to speak to one of our team.

Posted on: May 15th, 2017 by admin No Comments

How likely is racking damage?

Racking damage is unfortunately part and parcel of running a warehouse and no matter how carefully you guard against it there is always the chance that something can happen under your nose which greatly reduces the load bearing capacity of your racking and as a result puts your employees in danger.

One of the biggest causes of racking damage is when a forklift truck driver accidentally knocks into racking. While you can guard against this with good training and safety lines, you can never completely remove the danger of human error leading to an accident. It’s important that you follow good practices and if a pallet is identified as being damaged you should quickly remove it from use and have it repaired before being put back into action. Continued use of damaged pallets can cause problems with your beams.

Damage to your racking, no matter how small, can have a huge impact on your systems and reduce the amount of weight that it can hold. This in turn can lead to a disastrous collapse which at the very least puts your stock at risk and at the very worst endangers your employees.  If an accident were to happen in your workplace, would you be confident that you had done everything you could to prevent it? Under the Corporate Manslaughter and Homicide Act (2007) you can be found guilty of corporate manslaughter as a result of management failures and breaching your duty of care.

However, just because damage to racking is very likely doesn’t mean that there is nothing that can be done about it. By organising periodic reviews of your racking with a professional company you can quickly identify small signs of wear and tear before they develop into something much worse.

Logical Storage is highly skilled in spotting the often hard-to-find signs of racking degradation. We carry out regular reviews for a number of businesses helping them to keep their systems in good working order and to maintain their legal obligations under the Health & Safety Act.  To find out more please call us on 0845 689 1300.