How to Secure Warehouse Pallet Racking

A warehouse with secure pallet racking

Pallet racks are unbelievably useful, but they can also present some serious safety hazards for your workers when used improperly.

Here are a few common pallet rack safety issues, and the steps you can take to overcome them and ensure that you have secure pallet racking.

1. Improper alignment

Misaligned or improperly installed pallet racks can cause damage and expose your workers to potential injuries. That’s why secure pallet racking begins with you heeding the manufacturer’s installation instructions to the letter. That way, you can make sure the racks are properly aligned, level and that all connections are correctly installed.

2. Incorrect labeling

One of the key methods for making your pallet racking safe is to make sure weight capacities are properly labeled. Your workers will know right away how many items they can place on a shelf and how to position them properly.

Make sure the labels you use are made from durable materials so they have the same shelf life as your shelving. Polyester labels tend to be more durable than their paper counterparts.

3. Product overhang

There’s always a chance pallets will overhang the edge of your racks. This isn’t an automatic danger, but it’s still something to be aware of and to try to minimize. You need to be sure pallet overhang meets the manufacturer’s standards, including weight limit standards. Consider using shrink wrap to keep skids together and stop product from moving.

4. Loose fittings

As products move on and off your pallet racks, the movement can cause the anchor plates at the bottom of the rack to come loose. Secure pallet racking by using sturdy anchor bolts and conducting routine inspections to make sure they’ve remained fastened and don’t need to be replaced.

5. Improper usage

We’re not talking about a warehouse using their pallet racks for anything but storage. Improper usage can mean something as simple as misunderstanding or ignoring weight limits. Make sure you pay attention to the manufacturer’s guidelines to ensure that you’re not exceeding weight limits and that you’re using the appropriate tools for installation.

Improper forklift usage can also be an issue. Everyone who drives a forklift in your facility should understand the weight limits of the lifts and the pallets to which they’re transferring items. Your racks might be designed to sustain damage from an occasional forklift collision, but over time this can cause irreversible damage to your racks.

Inspecting your racks

Between forklift damage, incorrect construction and improper installation, there are a lot of things that can go wrong with your pallet racking systems.

To ensure secure pallet racking, inspect the following components on a regular basis:

  • Anti-collapse mesh
  • Beams
  • Beam locks
  • Bracing
  • Column guards
  • Decking
  • Floor fixing anchors
  • Foot plates
  • Front and rear posts
  • Load notices and labels
  • Shims

The beams are especially important, as they tend to bear the brunt of forklift damage. Keep an eye out for deflection or bending beams. It’s normal to find some level of deflection, but if your racks are overloaded, the beams will show extreme bending. This is a sign that you need to reposition or remove the load after ensuring the beam’s integrity.

Is your pallet racking past the point of no return? Greystone Equipment Company can help. We work with top pallet rack companies like Husky Rack & Wire.

With our help, you can go to work confident your team is storing products on durable, secure pallet racking. Contact us today to learn more.