Setting Up Your Warehouse's Pallet Racks for Optimal Safety

Pallet racks are not structures you want falling on you if there is a quake or if someone crashes a cart into the base of the rack. For optimal safety, you need to brace the rack and set it up so that if something does happen that could threaten its stability, the rack will have a better chance of staying upright. Here are some tips for setting up teardrop pallet racks for optimal safety. 

Good Weight Distribution

The items on the rack need to be distributed well in terms of weight. Heavier items should be on lower shelves; that helps stabilize the rack, too. Lighter items that have sharp corners or edges should also be on lower shelves because, even though they are light, the sharp components could injure someone if the rack were to fall and the items were to hit people below. Placing lighter (and non-sharp) items high up also gives forklifts a break as the machines don't have to hold so much weight as they retrieve goods from higher shelves.

Teardrop-Style Punch Holes

Pallet racks come in different styles, including a couple of variations in how the racks are set up and connected. Teardrop pallet racks have that upside-down teardrop-shaped punch hole that makes it easier to secure screws and bolts. Once inserted in the rack, a bolt rests in the narrow bottom half of the punch hole, which means there is more metal wedged between the head of the bolt and the nut on the other side. Overall, the rack and its shelves are steadier and less likely to fail.

Bolting and Restraining

Finally, the racks need to be restrained. Many have holes in their bases that allow you to bolt the rack to the floor; you should also bolt it to the adjacent wall, if it's against a wall, or leash it to the nearest column or pillar. Any restraints that you can add to the rack help keep it upright in case of shaking or sideways impact.

Optional: Shelf Straps

You can get straps that stretch from one end of the rack to the other, creating an extra restraint for items on the rack. This is very helpful when you have smaller items that could fly off easily; the strap acts as an obstacle that prevents items from toppling off. It may not work for large items on high shelves as the strap could interfere with the forklift.

Teardrop pallet racks are extremely easy to find now, and they may be the key to making tall pallet racks much safer to use. Combined with these other strategies, you can enhance the level of safety in your warehouse and improve working conditions.