The Eminent Dangers of Pallet Racking
The most common question asked is ‘how do I know my pallet racking is not being overloaded? ‘You have taken steps in the right direction by having load capacity per beam level labels placed on beams. But how do you know those capacities are correct?
Typically new or fairly new pallet racking is generally not a major concern. This is because a Pre-Start Health and Safety Review exemption certificate would have been provided by the manufacturer at the time of installation and therefore the capacities provided by the manufacturer should be reliable.
In most cases it’s the existing racking systems, which might have been in use for long periods of time, which become tricky. This is because, more commonly, over time, changes could have been made to the formation and also, some components might have been replaced with new or used components. This is a common situation that can be found in most warehouses today.
A challenging factor in rating existing systems is in fact, the inconsistency in the specifications of racking components. For example a typical system consists of frames and beams; however this system could have a variety of sizes in frames and beams which in turn allow a variety of load capacities.
Another challenge is when changes are made to the configuration of the system. A common example would be taking out a beam level to accommodate a larger pallet. This simple change could result in a lower capacity rating for the remaining levels.
The use or wire decks, shelf panels or plywood also have an effect on the capacity rating.
Because of these challenges, and others to take into consideration, is why such care is taken whenever a PSR is conducted. It is best to always have up-to-date documentation for racking structures to make sure your system is not being overloaded.
A PSR is required anytime a change is made to the formation.