Friday, January 1, 2016

Are There OSHA Requirements to Secure Pallet Racks?

Last month I asked readers for ideas we could discuss on the blog. And I was very pleased with the response. One follower submitted this commonly-asked question to be discussed:

QUESTION:  Where do I find the requirement to anchor pallet racking?

ANSWER:  You will not find that requirement specifically stated in the federal OSHA standards. About the closest thing you could cite from the OSHA regulations would be Subpart N – Material Handling and Storage, paragraph 1910.176(b) – which states that “materials shall not create a hazard”.  But that would be a stretch at best. 

There is, however, an appropriate reference document that could be (and often is) used by OSHA in conjunction with paragraph (5)(a)(1) of the OSH Act of 1970 (also known as the General Duty Clause) to cite employers for pallet racks and other types of industrial steel shelving (like pipe racks, bin storage racks, and parts shelves) that are not adequately secured from falling over. And that document is . . .

> > >  CLICK HERE to continue reading post . . .  > > >

8 comments:

  1. Curtis. In reference to the storage rack scenario, I have in my historical files a citation associated with storage racks. The alleged hazardous condition was a bent vertical member which OSHA cited as creating a hazard due to loss of structural integrity – especially with materials being stored on the rack. The citation was proposed as SERIOUS but was negotiated. As you stated, 1910.179 was used and they referenced a feasible method of abatement was to follow the ANSI standard. Important to note, the ANSI standard has some very detailed design and securement criteria that our colleagues should be cognizant of when diving into the standard. I’ve found the document to be very useful and informative. - Rob

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  2. Is there any regulation for how big of a gap you are allowed between the wire decking on the pallet rack?

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    1. None. You should refer to the manufacturer's instructions for the pallet racks to see what they may have to say about that.

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  3. I have two questions:

    What are the requirements for protecting vertical rack braces from impact? Should only the outside corners be protected?

    What are the requirements for when metal decking is required for pallet racks?

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    1. There are no Federal OSHA regulations at all regarding these things. You should refer to the voluntary standard mentioned in the blog for recommendations.

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  4. If the rack has two holes for bolts to anchor to the ground can they use only one bolt ?

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  5. Is there any OSHA guideline on how far a pallet can overhang the racking?

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