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How to Increase Safety for Racking and Shelving Systems

5 tips to prevent warehouse injuries and racking damage.

All shelving systems – whether library shelving, warehouse racking, or supermarket shelving – must be secured and considered safe.  This is not only to ensure the safety of the people around them, but also to ensure the safety of the products they are storing, as well as the racks themselves.  Shelving systems which are not secured can be extremely dangerous, and often costly.


Securing shelving in the warehouse needn’t be a daunting prospect.  Yes, it does need to be given the proper attention, but with some careful consideration it is possible to be sure that your racking safety is far above par.  


Here are some tips to help you create a safe working environment in your warehouse, no matter what shelving systems you use.

Consider aisle widths:

Granted, having narrower aisles does allow for more pallet storage, but it can also lead to decreased productivity as a result of confinement.  Furthermore, narrow aisles can be a safety hazard as they give heavy machinery, like forklifts, less room to manoeuvre.

Know the limitations of your staff:  

This is especially important to for heavy machinery operators.  Know the limitations of your staff’s skills, and never attempt to have workers perform outside of their comfort zones without the correct supervision and training.

Take the right safety measures:  

Racking is always at risk of being struck my mobile machinery, such as forklifts.  This is why it is a good idea to install safety material, such as column guards, to protect the racking against impact.

Take note of the obvious:  

You might think it goes without saying that your racking should be bolted to the floor, but don’t take this for granted.  Before you begin loading a rack, be sure to check for the features that you may think are obvious.  It is also important to check your racks regularly for common wear and tear.  Only load racks that are in the optimum state of repair.

Stress the necessity for good stacking:  

Poor stacking practices are often responsible for accidents in the warehouse.  This is why you should stress the importance of proper stacking techniques to your staff.  Uneven stacking and exceeding racking load limits are hazardous practices that should be dealt with immediately.


These safety tips can be adapted for the stacking of everything from library shelving to supermarket shelving, but they are of the utmost importance in the warehouse.  By incorporating these tips into your safety considerations, you can create a safer working environment for your staff as well as your racking.

Image credit: http://www.safetysurvey.co.uk/