In the United Kingdom, the safety regulations for pallet racks are set by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and the Storage Equipment Manufacturers’ Association (SEMA). These regulations cover the design, installation, and maintenance of pallet racking systems.
Regular inspections of pallet racking systems are essential to ensure the safety and structural integrity of the storage system. Here is a comprehensive pallet racking inspection checklist that can help you identify potential issues and take appropriate actions:
1. General Inspection
- Check for any signs of damage or distortion in upright frames, beams, or bracing.
- Ensure that the racking system is plumb and level.
- Look for signs of rust, corrosion, or deterioration in the metal components.
- Inspect the floor beneath the racks for any signs of damage or unevenness.
2. Upright Frames
- Examine the upright frames for vertical and horizontal stability.
- Check for any visible signs of bending, dents, or structural damage.
- Ensure that the baseplates are secure and not damaged.
- Verify that the uprights are properly anchored to the floor or wall.
- Inspect the beams for any visible signs of bending, twisting, or damage.
- Check beam connectors and locking devices to ensure they are properly engaged.
- Ensure that the beams are correctly seated in the connectors.
- Verify that the load weight on the beams does not exceed the manufacturer’s specified limits.
4. Safety Devices and Accessories
- Check the presence and functionality of beam safety pins or locking clips.
- Inspect the condition and proper installation of pallet supports or wire mesh decking.
- Verify the use and functionality of load stop beams or pallet stops to prevent items from falling.
5. Load Levels and Load Distribution
- Ensure that the loads are evenly distributed across the beams.
- Check for any signs of overloading or uneven loading that could compromise the rack’s integrity.
- Confirm that the pallets or storage containers are in good condition and suitable for the load.
6. Aisle Clearances
- Verify that the aisles are clear from obstructions, debris, or stored items.
- Ensure that fire suppression equipment, emergency exits, and safety signage are not obstructed.
7. Documentation and Labels
- Check for proper labeling and signage indicating load capacities, rack locations, and safety information.
- Review the documentation for the rack system, including design plans, load calculations, and inspection records.
8. Employee Training and Awareness
- Ensure that employees are trained in safe loading and unloading practices.
- Promote a culture of reporting any damage or safety concerns promptly.
It is crucial to document and address any identified issues or damages promptly. Consult with a qualified rack system engineer or supplier for guidance on repairs, replacements, or necessary actions to maintain the safety and integrity of your pallet racking system. Regular inspections should be conducted as part of your warehouse safety program to mitigate potential risks and maintain a safe working environment.
Having regular racking inspections is a no brainer!
By conducting regular pallet racking safety inspections, companies can reap several benefits:
- Improve safety – These inspections can identify and address hazards and risks such as damaged or worn parts, overloaded racks, or improperly loaded materials, preventing accidents and injuries to workers, and protecting the facility and its contents.
- Ensure compliance with regulations – Regular inspections can confirm that the racking system is in compliance with UK safety regulations set by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and the Storage Equipment Manufacturers’ Association (SEMA), avoiding fines and penalties for non-compliance.
- Enhance efficiency – Properly maintained and inspected racks can improve the efficiency of the warehouse or facility by ensuring that materials are stored and accessed safely and easily.
- Save costs – Regular inspections can detect potential problems early on, reducing costs for repairs, replacements, or accidents.
- Improve Business Image – Demonstrating compliance with safety regulations can enhance the company’s reputation and relationships with employees, customers, and regulators.
- Obtain better insurance terms – Insurance companies often require regular safety inspections, and if an accident happens, the inspections can serve as evidence that the company did everything possible to prevent it.
It’s crucial to keep records of all safety inspections, maintenance, and repairs, to demonstrate compliance with safety regulations and to have a reference for future inspections.
How often should pallet racking be inspected?
Pallet racking should be inspected regularly (at least once a year) to ensure that it is safe and in good condition. The frequency of inspections will depend on the type of operation and the equipment used, as well as the regulatory requirements.
According to the Storage Equipment Manufacturers’ Association (SEMA), pallet racking systems should be inspected at least once a year by a qualified inspector, or more frequently if the system is subject to heavy use or there is any indication of damage or wear. In addition, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) recommends that a safety inspection of the whole warehouse should be carried out at least once a year, and more frequently if there are specific risks or hazards present.
It is important to note that safety inspections should be seen as a continuous process, and not a one-time event. Regular inspections, preventative maintenance and good housekeeping can help identify potential hazards early and prevent accidents from occurring. In case of incidents, near-misses, or complaints, it is important to carry out an immediate inspection to identify and rectify any problems as soon as possible.
High rate of accidents and injuries compared to other industries – this needs to change
The warehousing and storage industry has a high rate of accidents and injuries compared to other industries. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) reports that in 2018/2019, the sector had a rate of 4.4 non-fatal injuries per 100,000 workers, higher than the overall rate of 2.8 per 100,000 workers for all industries. Common causes of accidents in warehouses include slips, trips and falls, being struck by falling objects, manual handling injuries, vehicle-related incidents and injuries caused by defective or poorly maintained equipment such as pallet racking or conveyor systems. It’s important to implement safety measures and regular inspections to prevent accidents and ensure compliance with regulations, as the actual number of incidents may be higher due to underreporting.
Pallet Racking Inspection Services North East
For businesses in North East England, ensuring the safety and compliance of your pallet racking systems is of utmost importance. To assist you in maintaining a secure and efficient storage environment, 2h Storage Solutions offers professional pallet racking inspection services tailored to your specific needs. With our expertise and commitment to safety, we provide comprehensive inspections that help identify potential issues and ensure compliance with industry standards and regulations.
Why Choose 2h Storage Solutions?
Experience and Expertise
With over 25 years of experience in the storage industry, we have extensive knowledge of pallet racking systems and their safety requirements.
Our team of qualified inspectors possesses the necessary expertise to assess the condition of your racking systems accurately.
Compliance with Regulations
We understand the importance of complying with health and safety regulations, including SEMA (Storage Equipment Manufacturers Association) guidelines, HSE (Health and Safety Executive) requirements, and other industry standards.
Our inspections focus on identifying potential risks, non-compliance issues, and necessary corrective actions to ensure your pallet racking systems meet the required safety standards.
Customized Inspection Services
We tailor our inspection services to meet the specific needs of your business and racking systems.
Our inspections cover all critical components of the pallet racking system, including upright frames, beams, bracing, safety devices, load levels, and more.
Detailed Inspection Reports
After conducting a thorough inspection, we provide you with detailed reports that highlight any observed issues or potential risks.
Our reports outline recommended actions and prioritize them based on severity, helping you understand the necessary steps to ensure the safety and longevity of your racking systems.
Repair and Maintenance Solutions
In addition to inspections, we offer comprehensive repair and maintenance services to address any identified issues promptly.
Our team of experienced engineers can carry out necessary repairs, replacements, and installations to restore your pallet racking systems to optimal condition.
Contact us today
Book your racking inspection or free site survey by calling us today on