Because of the extensive regulations put in place by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), every warehouse must abide by certain standards that are designed to keep workers safe and away from hazardous working conditions. Warehouse managers and employees must follow these regulations if they wish to continue operation, and failure to follow OSHA guidelines can result in hefty fines or the closure of the business.
Make sure your warehouse shelving safety standards are in line with expectations for safe business operations and that there is nothing OSHA will find lacking.
Proper Installation of Racks
Before you can place anything on a rack, you must ensure it is properly constructed and put in place. Ensure all anchors are securely fastened and that each post and brace conform to the manufacturer’s specifications.
A failure to install the rack properly or using parts that are not specified by the manufacturer can result in weak links in construction. If different components are used in place of those recommended, the support structure may be weak and run the risk of collapsing.
Damage To Rack Installations
With the presence of forklifts, power jacks, and other vehicles in the warehouse, the risk of collision with support structures is a common concern. Damage to a rack’s support structure as a result of a vehicle accident will weaken the structure or cause racking systems to fail immediately.
Install mirrors at problematic intersections so drivers can clearly see where the edges of racks are located. Installing pallet rack protection barriers can also greatly mitigate the damage done as a result of a collision. Also, having adequate lighting so drivers can clearly see is essential to maintaining warehouse safety standards.
This point goes back to using unsafe components for racking construction. In the case of collisions or other damage related to rack systems, using whatever parts are available to repair the damage is unadvised and goes against OSHA regulations.
Know how much weight each rack can withstand and never push the shelving past its limits. Adding too much weight will cause shelves to collapse and will pose a risk to employees—risks that can end in serious injury or even death due to falling debris.
Know the Limits
Be aware of what your rack’s limits are and clearly post that weight for everyone to see.
Eliminate Workplace Hazards
These regulations are in place to ensure everyone can go home at the end of the day safely. Jeopardizing the well-being of workers will see your warehouse fined for failure to ensure safety, and if you incur enough negative marks, will see your warehouse see it closed down.