Pallet racking allows warehouse facilities to store more within the same floor plan by storing those objects at a height. However, it can also create risks for the people working in those warehouses. What risks should workers be aware of?
Pallet racking often requires employees to work at a height.
Working with pallet racking can often take workers off the ground to retrieve supplies and products placed on this racking. Depending on the facility, this may take them many feet off the ground. As one supplier noted, the height of pallet racking can range between 3 and 29 feet.
Even with protective measures, falls from a height can result in more severe injuries including fractures and head injuries, and these injuries can prove fatal. In fact, 11.7 percent of falls between 6 and 10 feet, 19.7 percent of falls between 11 and 15 feet and 17.4 percent of falls between 16 and 20 feet leading to catastrophic injuries.
Items falling form pallet racking can create other dangers.
Objects that were not properly secured can easily fall from pallet racking, especially if a forklift or other tool strikes that racking. If those items strike someone below, they can cause traumatic brain injuries, spinal injuries, broken bones, crushing injuries and many other forms of harm.
The injuries that warehouse workers experience due to falls or falling objects can be severe or even fatal, but injured people and their families have options. Workers’ compensation benefits could provide financial support to address the costs of medical care, the impact of lost wages and other expenses.