The Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act of 1970 requires an employer to offer a workplace that is free from known hazards to his employees.
Warehouse operators and rack owners are legally responsible for providing a safe workplace to their employees. The improper use, selection, installation, or maintenance of racking and storage systems may put workers at risk of injury and expose employers to severe liability in case of an accident.
While the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) continues to encourage employers and employees to reduce workplace hazards, it does not mention clear guidelines when dealing with pallet rack safety and damage specifically. Thus, it is up to companies and warehouse managers to acknowledge the risks posed by rack damage and proactively prevent them from occurring. “Material Handling and Storage,” an industry document published by OSHA, broadly covers the precautions employers and workers can take to avoid “storage hazards.” In practical terms, figuring out what these hazards might be and what to do with them is mainly left up to the user.
The collapse of a racking system can lead to costly repairs and insurance claims, liabilities, loss of productivity, or worse yet, loss of life. Accumulated damage and inaction can heighten the risk level in your warehouse, cause delays in your operations if your racks need to be offloaded, and prevent you from using valuable storage space, all things that can hurt your bottom line.
Pallet rack safety is essential towards:
- Protecting your employees and assets
- Reducing the risks of damaging products and equipment
- Managing your operations efficiently
- Reducing downtime when the rack is put out of use because it is damaged
- Compliance with OSHA and its regulations
For more information on how to improve pallet rack safety, you can read: