Rack Codes & StandardsRack Design & Installation

Revised ANSI MH26.2 Industrial Storage Rack Decking Standard Released


The Storage Rack Decking Group, a subset of MHI Industry Group the Rack Manufacturers Institute (RMI), recently revised its American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standard for storage rack decking. Storage rack decking rests on pallet rack beams to create a surface on which to place materials on pallets, in containers, or in some other form. The updated ANSI MH26.2: Design, Testing, and Utilization of Industrial Storage Rack Decking is now available for purchase.

ANSI MH26.2Originally developed in 2007 and updated in 2017 and 2023, ANSI MHI26.2 provides guidance for design, testing, fabrication, and utilization of industrial storage rack decking. The revised standard applies to storage rack decking utilized as an accessory for pallet racks that conform to ANSI MH16.1, Design, Testing, and Utilization of Industrial Steel Storage Racks.

Within the standard, readers will find guidance on a range of topics, including a comprehensive glossary of decking-related terminology, as well as illustrative photos and diagrams of different types of decking and beams. The standard also details requirements for materials and design of each type. It also provides manufacturers with guidance for how to describe and measure these rack accessories, as well as outlines allowable manufacturing tolerances.

MH26.2-2023 expands guidance from the 2017 standard by incorporating additional types of materials and loading scenarios.

“Previous versions of ANSI MH26.2 only applied to welded-wire mesh decking and uniform loading practices,” said Patrick Davison, MHI’s Director of Standards. “The RMI Storage Rack Decking Group recognized the need to expand the scope of the standard to include other deck types and loading approaches.”

ANSI MH26.2 Addresses Multiple Decking Types


Decking types now covered in ANSI MH26.2 include welded-wire mesh with permanently attached reinforcements, metal bar grating, composite engineered wood, corrugated metal, perforated sheet metal, or other materials.

“The RMI Storage Rack Decking Group recognized the need to expand the scope of the standard to include materials other than welded wire,” added Davison. “Rack decking can be made from a variety of materials. Therefore, the standard now provides guidance for those alternatives.”

ANSI MH26.2 also applies to uniformly loaded storage rack decking applications, as well as various concentrated and partially distributed loading conditions common to storage rack applications.

Different Load Scenarios Covered by ANSI MH26.2

Previous versions of ANSI MH26.2 limited the load testing to simulate a uniformly loaded storage rack scenario. The 2023 version now includes an expanded laboratory testing section covering uniformly distributed loads. Further, it includes as several different alternatives for load distribution to evaluate the decking performance for known loading scenarios. These include:

  • Partially distributed uniform load
  • Two linear loads front to back
  • Two linear loads left to right
  • Three linear loads front to back
  • Three linear loads left to right
  • Four-point load
  • Nine-point load

Regardless of the load scenario, the standard defines the load capacity of rack decking as the lesser of the deflection value of D/165 (where D is the depth of the storage rack) or one-half of the ultimate load in which structural collapse of the storage rack decking occurs. This criterion is unchanged from the prior standard revisions.

RMI Storage Rack Decking Group Members Guided Revision Process

Participating in the revisions and review of ANSI MH26.2 were members of RMI’s Storage Rack Decking Group. They include:

  • Cornerstone Specialty Wood Products
  • DACS, Inc.
  • Husky Rack & Wire
  • ITC Manufacturing, Inc.
  • J&L Wire Products
  • Nashville Wire Products
  • Ohio Gratings, Inc.

Access More Storage Rack Decking Safety Information

In addition to the resources outlined above, RMI offers a broad range of additional materials detailing best practices to enhance pallet rack safety. This includes a series of videos, presentations, publications, case studies, and frequently asked questions. Additionally, an MHI Cast podcast recording about rack safety is available.