The threat of fire is a serious concern in any warehouse, and finding ways to mitigate a disaster is always a necessity for managers and building owners. While there are ways to decrease the likelihood of a fire, you never know when one will start burning. For that reason, it is essential to have methods in place to stop the spread of fires.

The importance of flue space in fire protection should not go understated, as it is a critical method to contain and stop fires before they put lives at risk.

Transverse and Longitudinal

There are two different types of flue space: transverse and longitudinal. Each one needs adequate space to allow the heat to travel upward in order to activate the sprinkler system. Without this vertical flow of air and heat, the fire will be allowed to run rampant without setting off alarms or countermeasures.


Transverse refers to the space between pallets on a rack. Having adequate transverse space means that air can go from the bottom of the rack to the very top without being blocked by a pallet; it’s essentially a hole running from top to bottom.


Longitudinal is the space that is between rows of racks; essentially, it is the aisles that separate entire pallet racks from one another.

Space for Water To Flow

Beyond allowing the heat to activate alarms and sprinklers, the importance of flue space facilitates the flow of water going down. The pallet racks often limit the effectiveness of the sprinkler system, and without the proper space for the water to reliably flow downwards, it will pool at the top shelf. Failing to allow the water to reach the flames will result in the unnecessary spread of the fire, causing devastating damage to inventory and property and putting workers’ lives at risk.

Install the Necessary Space

Investing in pallet rack flue spacers will ensure that the heat from the fire will activate the sprinkler system and allow the water to flow in large enough quantities to snuff out the fire before it causes irreparable damage.

Don’t hesitate to invest in the tools to mitigate the dangers of fire; you do not know when one will ignite, and having inadequate safety measures in place puts the lives of workers at risk.