How to Create a Storage Warehouse
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Creating a storage warehouse may seem easy on the surface but there is a great deal to consider. Safety aspects, cost and efficiency all need to be considered so that you can make your warehouse work to its full potential for you. This article will discuss some of the key elements that you will need to consider when setting up a warehouse.
Firstly, you will need to decide what form of storage you wish to utilise. There are numerous different methods and each of them has both benefits and disadvantages.
- Block Stacking is the cheapest and most easily established method of storing blocks. The pallets are stored in blocks around the warehouse floor by an overhead crane or fork lift trucks. The height to which they can be stacked depends on the load and condition of the pallets in use. When using this method, access to pallets at the bottom of the pile will be restricted by the other pallets around and on top of it. This method necessitates a first in, last out process.
- Pallet Racking is a cheap and efficient method of storing pallets. This system works through the storage of pallets on a frame which allows stacking up to 11 metres high and provides access to all of the pallets at once. This method requires a large amount of space as forklifts need to be able to manoeuvre freely in between the rows. Having access to any of the pallets at any time will increase efficiency, however.
- Double Deep Racking is another method of frame storage which differs because it stores two pallets in each section of the frame instead of one. This system requires a double length fork lift, which requires greater expertise to use, but will increase the efficiency of space. Larger spaces may be needed between the frames because of the complexity of manoeuvring a double length fork lift truck.
- There are further methods of pallet storage which could be implemented in a warehouse but these three options are the cheapest and most space efficient for anything but an enormous company.
Once you have decided upon the method of storage you are going to use, it is vital to consider the safety of your warehouse. When using fork lifts and cranes, people in your warehouse need to be aware of abnormal dangers from above and all around. To create a safe environment it is important to clearly mark dangerous areas:
- Have signs highlighting use of dangerous equipment on all entrances.
- Make safety equipment obligatory when entering the warehouse regardless of intentions.
- Mark clear pathways for fire escape and passage through the warehouse. There should never be anything obstructing these pathways.
Safety should always be considered and any changes made to the warehouse should immediately trigger a safety training program and a development of the safety procedures. Safety is an ongoing element, not a once off review.
The management of the warehouse is very important. There needs to be an individual, or a group of managers, who are in charge of all processes and are always supervising when the warehouse is in operation. If you are running a business then you will not have time to manage a warehouse floor at all times, so be sure to seek managerial expertise to organise the safety and day to day operations of the warehouse.