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Planning A New Storage Rack Project? Answer These Questions For The Safest Design

Thinking of installing a new industrial steel storage rack? Whether the structure is intended for an existing facility or a new building, it’s important to be prepared to answer a series of questions and provide detailed information to the professional rack engineer who will be designing the system. This ensures both a safe rack design and one that optimally meets the owner’s storage needs.

As detailed in RMI’s Considerations for the Planning and Use of Industrial Steel Storage Racks, Section 2.1, a variety of questions need to be answered during the planning phase. To address those details, include:

  • Site-specific information about the geographic and geotechnical conditions at the location selected for a new or existing storage facility or distribution center; this impacts the potential need for the rack system to be designed, manufactured and installed to resist earthquake, wind, or snow load forces.
  • Dimensions and details about the facility to be leased, purchased, or constructed, including size, shape, layout, and type of building.
  • The type and variety of goods to be received, stored, picked, packed, and shipped from the facility.
  • The desired type of industrial steel storage rack to be used, including selective, cantilever, flow, pushback, drive-in, drive-thru, dual-bay, work platforms and any other related systems.
  • Type (or types) of material handling equipment that will interface with the rack system.
  • Information about the products to be stored, including sizes, dimensions, and weights.
  • Details about the unit loads (pallet loads) to be received, stored, and handled, including sizes, dimensions, weights, uniformity or asymmetry.
  • The type of load handling medium to be used: pallets, slip sheets, skids, or other.
  • The plan for the operational layout of the building.
  • Requirements for circulation and egress in normal and emergency situations.
  • Requirements for sprinkler systems, lighting, and heating and cooling.

Including all of these details in the scope of the rack project ensures that the final storage rack system is designed for both safety and function.

Need more insights on planning a new industrial steel storage rack project? Download RMI’s Considerations for the Planning and Use of Industrial Steel Storage Racks here.