Palletizing and stacking are common tasks in warehouses and distribution centers. While pallets and skids are efficient ways to move products, they can be dangerous to the worker if not used correctly or if the equipment isn’t made to the best standard. If not handled properly, pallets can easily fall off of forklifts or trucks, leading to injuries for workers. In fact, palletizing and stacking account for more than 60% of all warehouse injuries, which is why it’s important to understand the possible hazards when it comes to palletizing and stacking. 

Common Palletizing and Stacking Practices

1. Stacking Pallets Higher Than Six Feet

Stacking pallets more than six feet in height is a common practice in warehouses and distribution centers. While it may save space, it can also be dangerous if it doesn’t meet the pallet safety standards. If a stack of pallets falls, it can cause injury to workers nearby, or lead to the risk of other falls. Pallets should be stacked no higher than six feet to prevent them from toppling over and injuring workers below. Always stack and unstack pallets carefully and never exceed the recommended height.

2. Filling Pallets Beyond Their Capacity

Another common practice is overloading pallets. Workers try to fit too many products onto a single pallet in order to optimize space. Unfortunately, the result is an unstable and dangerous stack of products at risk of toppling. To prevent this, always ensure that pallets are not overloaded. Check the pallet’s weight limit and ensure that the products on it do not exceed this limit. If a pallet becomes overloaded, do not try to move it by yourself. Get help from another worker to avoid injury.

3. Use of the Wrong Type of Pallet for the Job

There are many different types of pallets available. Each is designed for a specific purpose and has its own weight limit. It is important to use the proper type of pallet for the job to avoid injury. Always follow safety guidelines and ensure you’re using or purchasing a highly-rated pallet that is the right type for the job you need.

Hazards of Palletizing and Stacking

There are many hazards associated with palletizing and stacking. 

1. Potential Risk of Pallet Injury

One of the biggest hazards of palletizing and stacking is the risk of pallet injuries. To avoid this problem, always order pallets from a trusted provider and follow the safety precautions included with the product. When pallets are not stacked or loaded properly. They can fall and injure workers below. Overloaded or improperly balanced pallets are also more likely to fall, leading to hazards in the workplace. Always follow the proper procedures for stacking and loading pallets to avoid injury.

In addition, palletizing and stacking risk damage to products. If products are not properly secured on a pallet, they can fall off and be damaged. Improperly stacked pallets can also collapse, damaging the products on them.

2. Overloaded Pallets

Overloaded pallets are another common hazard. These pallets are more likely to fall and cause pallet injuries to the workers. Ensure that each pallet is evenly balanced and does not exceed the weight limit for the type of pallet used. If a pallet becomes overloaded, do not try to move it yourself. Get help from another worker to avoid injury.

3. Manual Palletizing Is Not as Efficient

Manually palletizing and stacking is time-consuming and is not as efficient as using a machine. If workers are manually palletizing and stacking, they are more likely to make mistakes which can lead to injuries. To avoid these hazards, use a palletizing machine or other automated systems. When manual palletizing is necessary; ensure to follow all safety procedures to avoid injury. Use the proper lifting techniques and always get help from another worker when necessary. Professional manufacturing services, like American Manufacturing, follow the most efficient industry procedures that get the job done right, so stay up to date for all the latest tips and industry knowledge.

4. Underrated Pallet

Using the wrong type of pallet can lead to injuries for workers. Always follow safety guidelines  and ensure you’re using or purchasing the right type of pallet for the job.

 5. Pallet Debris

Another hazard associated with palletizing and stacking is the potential for pallet debris. When pallets are broken or damaged, they can release debris that can create a tripping hazard and injure workers. Always inspect pallets for damage before using them and dispose of them properly when they are no longer usable.

6. Stepping Between Pallets 

Stepping between pallets can be dangerous. If a pallet falls, it could crush the worker. To avoid this, always use proper lifting techniques when moving between pallets.

Trust the Experts with American Manufacturing

Palletizing and stacking can be dangerous if not done properly. American Manufacturing always follows the correct procedure and guidelines for our products and practices, keeping our services efficient and our products, safe. Always follow safety procedures when palletizing and stacking to avoid hazards, and stay up to date on all the intel in the Manufacturing Industry. For any questions about proper palletizing and stacking procedures, contact American Manufacturing – the leading supplier in the automotive industry with over 50 years of experience.