Warehouses and distribution centers can be hectic, and it is essential to have solid damage prevention practices in effect to prevent employee injury and minimize loss. However, in an environment where workers are maneuvering heavy equipment and heavy loads in confined spaces, accidents are bound to happen.
Even the best driver occasionally has a collision, and when a five-ton forklift confronts a pallet rack, the rack is going to lose. Rack collapse is rare, but the structural integrity of the rack can be diminished, laying the groundwork for future failure. Fortunately, a lot can be done to prevent these accidents and minimize the damages when they occur.
- Training. Driver training should always be at the top of the list. Certification should be required of all forklift drivers, as well as an OSHA-approved safety course. Drivers should also receive training in the racking system and the maintenance, characteristics, and operational limits of their forklift.
- Visibility. The more a driver can see, the more safely they can perform. Adequate lighting allow’s the driver to safely negotiate the aisle and have a good view of the racks. Likewise, wide-angle convex mirrors mounted on the forklift and at the ends of aisles give forklift drivers an increased ability to observe their surroundings, greatly reducing the opportunity for mishaps.
- Rack inspection. Pallet racks endure a lot of wear and tear. Collision with forklifts, improper loading, climbing by workers, and normal use put stress on the racks. Trained personnel should regularly inspect racks for structural integrity, damaged uprights, corrosion, row alignment, overloading, and floor condition and level.
Read the full article in Inbound Logistics here.