The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to mitigating the threat and damage of fires in workplaces. Because of the dangers associated with warehouses, many facilities have adopted the standards and regulations outlined by the NFPA to ensure a safer environment for everyone working on a warehouse floor. Understanding pallet rack NFPA standards will allow your business to know what the common threats to worker safety are and how to best eliminate potentially life-threatening issues.
Are You Aware of Your Inventory?
You should know what you bring into your facility and what you send out; being unaware of the dangers of the materials you are handling can lead to mistakes in storage that can result in disaster. You need to always be keenly aware of the volatility of inventory and whether it is susceptible to combustion or ignition of any kind.
Proper Storage Techniques
Knowing how dangerous the material you’re handling is or how it interacts with the environment it’s placed in will give you the knowledge to store them correctly. Flammable materials need to be kept in a separate location to decrease the chances of ignition.
Do You Have the Appropriate Flue Space?
In the event that a fire does occur, it is essential that you have the necessary flue space to ensure you can take the appropriate next steps. Flue space is the area between loads stored on racks that allows air to travel upward without being blocked. This free space that the air can travel up is ideal during fire events. The hot air will rise, and the intense heat of the fire will rise to the sprinkler system, setting it off.
Give Your Inventory Room To Breathe
Investing in pallet rack spacing products will give your racks the appropriate room to let hot air travel up toward the sprinkler system. Without flue space, your sprinkler system may not activate in time to adequately suppress the growing fire, and in the worst of circumstances, may not activate at all.
Will Your Racks Allow Sufficient Waterflow?
Beyond flue space, you need to think about how the water from the sprinklers will travel through your racks. If the shelves on your racks have solid decking, the water may become trapped on each level, making it near impossible for the water to flow downward to the fire. But in decks that have channels and open space to let the water pass through uninterrupted, the water has a far better chance of reaching the fire and putting it out.
Always Have Fire Hazards in Mind
Understanding pallet rack NFPA standards will help you combat the possibility of fires breaking out and can aid you in keeping workers safe while they are on the job. Don’t wait to install the safety measures needed to prevent fires from spreading, whether that be increasing flue space or sectioning off dangerous materials.