Warehouse Shelving & Rack Collapse

Warehouse Shelving & Rack Collapse

Warehouse shelving and pallet rack collapses like the one pictured are likely due to some combination of under-engineering and/or overloading. They may be triggered by a lift truck impact or simply fall like dominos (as in this instance) without warning.

In the case of new storage equipment purchased through a manufacturer or authorized distributor, you must ask the vendor for signed and sealed engineering drawings and calculations (including seismic analysis) applicable to the specific configuration, bill of materials, capacities, intended use, and geographic location. Rack and shelving should be compliant with the American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC) and Rack Manufacturer’s Institute (RMI) standards in addition to all federal, state, and local building codes and life-safety standards.

Without the above engineering calculations and certifications, there is no reliable way of holding the manufacturer, distributor, dealer, or installer responsible for a failure that may cause millions of dollars in damage, irreparable business continuity issues, and worst of all, cause serious injury or death.

This is the difficulty with purchasing used warehouse racks or shelving (especially if there are multiple manufacturers’ products being integrated into the storage system). Who will stand behind the integrity of the system if the unspeakable happens? Who will bear responsibility?

If you are inclined to purchase used equipment due to cost or the advantage of lead times, you should engage a metallurgical engineer to certify the integrity of all of the components and then have the needed signed and sealed calculations and drawings completed by a structural engineer based on the certified bill of materials. At OPSdesign, our generic functional specifications and sealed bid process/documents address these and other issues to protect our clients’ interests.
Visit our website to learn about this approach: https://lnkd.in/eE-TCjTQ