Racking- Bridging The Safety Gap

Racking repairs carried out by a professional qualified team

For all our talk of automation in the warehouse, the truth of the matter is that human beings are still central to our warehouses. It is estimated that almost 2 million people are employed in the logistics and supply chain sector in the UK. People are essential to our industry.

Keeping all those employees safe is essential. Yet, an area that seems neglected is the need to increase safety with racking. The structure appears solid so surely it doesn’t need much attention. Yet, when you consider that a small knock or bump can significantly reduce the integrity of your racking and its load-carrying capacity, ignoring damage suddenly becomes critical.

 

Racking Basics

When addressing racking in your warehouse, safety must start at the very beginning with the correct design, manufacture and supply. Your equipment needs to be designed and manufactured following processes that comply with SEMA Design Codes or the European Code EN 15512. These industry standards instruct on the structural analysis of racking, required safety factors, considerations for loading and component testing.

 

But what happens when your racking is in place? Be aware that your racking falls under work equipment and through PUWER, as the owner of the racking, you are responsible for the maintenance of the structure. You need to take a 360o approach with safety at the forefront at every stage.

 

  1. Year-Round Inspections
    Every day of the year, employees are working around your racking. When you consider that damage to your racking can occur at any time, it makes sense to involve your employees with reporting issues when they occur. But, who to report to? This is where the HSE can help. They have produced a best practice guidance document for companies called ‘HSG76 Warehousing and Storage: A Guide to Health and Safety’. The guide recommends nominating a Person Responsible for Racking Safety (PRRS) who will be a member of your workforce. They will perform weekly racking inspections that include checking correct use of the racking, recording damage levels and implementing action on any points.

 

  1. Employee Training
    Think about getting your employees onboard with maximising racking safety levels through training. Not only will it equip them with the skills they need to use the racking safely, but it will also pay dividends to reduce future damage and unnecessary costs. You need training that is specific to your site, such as our SEMA Rack Safety Awareness Course. This training addresses how to operate safely around racking and read the load notice signage (a key safety item). It also covers the best inspection routine to implement, understanding and categorising damage plus how to implement action points.

 

  1. Expert Inspections
    To complete the maintenance circle, at least once a year, you must have your racking inspected by a professionally qualified racking inspector. They will conduct racking and storage assessments while also reporting and making recommendations to maintain safety. As a benchmark for the industry, SEMA operates a nationwide network of SEMA Approved Racking Inspectors (SARI). These highly qualified individuals are trained and assessed to enhance their competency in practical and cognitive skill sets. Their detailed inspection report will cover the suitability and compatibility of your equipment. Essentially for racking owners, their report will classify any damage using a traffic light system which clearly indicates what actions are required and over what timescales.

 

As a leading voice within the storage industry, SEMA has been advising companies on safety standards for over 50 years.

 

Why Use NSI Projects?

NSI Projects have over 40 years of experience in delivering great projects for commercial buildings. We partner with leading suppliers and experts to design, procure and install practical and cost effective solutions for our customers.

 

Call our experts today on 0800 027 1966.

Huboo warehouse exterior

Testimonials

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Huboo.

The team at NSI Projects provided a complete design and build service to Huboo for this project, taking time to understand our requirements and turning the design into reality. They provided trusted advice and safe project management, allowing us to get on with our daily operations knowing that the installation was under control.

Billy Ansell - Facilities Manager
Industrial pallet racking systems

Ribble Technologies.

We received top notch service from Alex Gallagher and the team with the install of our racking, couldn't recommend NSI enough! Nothing was too much trouble, amazing customer and installation service from start to finish.

Emma Cook - Office Manager
Bulk Powders automated pallet racking system

Bulk Powders.

On behalf of Bulk Powders, NSI Projects designed, procured and managed the installation of the automated pallet shuttle system from start to completion, the site was managed so that the installation and ongoing operations could exist side by side.

Guy Martin - Project Consultant

DHL Stirling Park large racking project

DHL Stirling Park.

I wanted to take a moment to express my sincere gratitude for the outstanding job your team did on our recent warehouse project. The changes and installation of the new racking was executed flawlessly and within budget, which is a testament to your team’s expertise and professionalism. Their attention to detail, commitment to quality workmanship, and ability to keep everything on track were truly impressive. They went above and beyond in ensuring that all aspects of the project were completed satisfactorily.

Andrius Cekanauskas - Senior Planning Manager DHL Manufacturing Logistics
Euro Options server room created with dividing walls

Euro Options.

We love the job NSI Projects have done, they worked efficiently and completed the job above our expectations.

Ian Tait - Commercial Manager Euro Options
Arial shot of a warehouse with soalr panels installed

John Scott Works.

A big thank you to NSI Projects for providing us with a quick and quality service.

Matthijis Schot - CEO PRN Group

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