Warehouses can be dangerous places to work. Handling equipment used to handle goods is constantly moving between shelves, work aisles and loads, and visibility is not always good. Additionally, in many cases the load units are stored high with the consequent danger of product falling to the ground.
Security in your warehouse is everyone’s responsibility
We all share the responsibility for warehouse safety. The awareness of all people that safety is very important, such as meeting schedules, removing production or meeting the delivery deadlines committed to our customers is key.
Moreover, security is not at odds with productivity or with the fulfillment of customer and company commitments. On the contrary, a lack of security or a poor level of security is detrimental to both productivity, and carries negative economic effects in the form of damage to property and injury to people.
It is important to observe and respect the warehouse safety indications and signs, as well as to be aware of improving working and safety conditions at all levels. “Alternate ways” can spare time, yet they can likewise have lethal results.
In case of doubts about the performance and load capacity of the shelving, consult the characteristics plates that every shelving installation must have.
Do not operate or use any storage or handling equipment for which you have not received adequate prior training
Through the training of workers, in addition to transmitting good practices, it is possible, among other things, to raise awareness about the risks involved in the use of storage equipment, as well as the handling equipment that moves the equipment.
It is essential to understand that making changes to the configuration of the metal racking entails modifying the performance in terms of maximum permitted load capacities or maximum allowable deformations that allow the installation to function correctly. Modifying the load levels of a rack is easy and fast, but it can have serious consequences for the structure from a static point of view, and the consequences can be fatal.
Pay attention to the load units
Be careful not to exceed the maximum weight allowed. The shelves are designed for maximum load. If this is exceeded, we can damage the shelf and cause dangerous situations.
Another important element to watch is the pallet on which the goods to be stored are located, generally made of wood. The pallet must be in perfect condition, without breaks or loose boards. In addition, it has to conform to the dimensions and construction established in the regulations in force. The most common pallet is the Euro pallet and it is the type of pallet used for industrial shelving design.
The use of non-standard or damaged pallets can compromise warehouse safety and be the cause of accidents.
If a pallet is damaged, the load unit must be re-palletized using a pallet in good condition.
Periodically inspect and control the racks
The industrial shelving is highly optimized working equipment, perforated profiles built with thin – walled steel, sensitive to shock. We can assure, based on experience, that with normal operation, respecting the manufacturer’s instructions, it will be very difficult to prevent the main components such as the struts and the beams from deteriorating.
These damages usually occur during the storage and collection operations of the load units. It is at these times that you have to pay special attention. The maneuvers of approaching the rack, depositing the load, and picking up the load units must be carried out with due care, avoiding hitting the rack.
If there is a blow, either from the machine or the load unit on the shelf, be proactive, check it immediately and if it is noticed that damage has been done on the shelf, immediately notify the person responsible for safety of the storage team for a first evaluation.
Damaged and beaten shelves are weakened and unstable structures. In case of doubt, it is recommended to close, unload and not use the damaged area, and notify an expert to assess the situation and the actions to be taken.
In addition to checking when blows or damage occur, plan periodic internal reviews based on your risk plan, and also external inspections to be carried out by expert personnel.
Maintain order and cleanliness
Keep both pedestrian and forklift crossings clear of obstacles. If a corridor has to be used for temporary storage on the ground, it is recommended to close it for the passage of forklifts until the corridor is again released and enabled for circulation. Dirt and obstacles in general are a frequent cause of accidents.
Another factor to consider is the lighting that must be sufficient for the activity to be carried out, trying to avoid shadow areas.
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