Now that we all know pallets are super-efficient in transportation of goods when shippers have several packages of same or different shapes. The real task is to stack them in layers one over the other, isn’t it? No matter if it’s done manually or by operating lift trucks the workforce concerned should be well-informed. Cargo organisation is tricky, particularly when you have lot many packages that are not uniformly shaped. But fret not, here we provide you with some excellent tips to keep your packages stacked spic and span on pallets. Stacking packages on pallets is helpful in preventing any mishaps during transit and while using equipment like forklifts, pallet jack or any other lifting machine. However, to ensure this, it is imperative to know how to stack pallets correctly.
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What are Stackable Pallets?
Stackable pallets are those packages on pallets arranged one over the other and send in one combined shipment. These packages can be either uniformly sized or of different sizes and shapes. When a shipper has to send multiple packages instead of one single package, stackable pallets are put to use. When there are different packages to be transported in a single shipment, stackable pallets offer sufficient stability and the chances of loss are very rare, provided the stacked goods on pallets stay secure and perfect. It’s the safest and most efficient way to prepare a shipping pallet. Shipping carriers want to make the most of the available space and stackable pallets serve the purpose. A good knowledge combined with proper care and attention keep the packages stacked securely on pallets.
Ideal Pallet Stacking Practices
Uneven loads, inappropriate use of pallet jacks and forklifts can pave way for unnecessary mishaps. But it can be avoided with the right knowledge on proper pallet stacking methods. Always stack packages as straight as possible. Here is a brief description of pallet stacking practices followed by experts. Let’s check it out.
1. Never exceed the weight limit of lifting equipment
Pallet stacking is usually implemented for sufficiently large and heavy items. Always ensure that the person-in-charge is fully aware of the maximum weight capacity of the equipment in use, for example a pallet jack or forklift. If the weight of the boxes exceeds what the equipment can manage, it certainly leads to safety risks which may cause injuries to the operator as well as those working adjacent.
2. Follow Height Limitations
Another consideration is to not stack boxes on pallets very high. If so, there is every chance that pallets may fall together from the top. Over stacking can lead goods to fall, which further results in accidents causing fatal injuries. Therefore, always make sure that goods are not stacked too high on the pallet. It may seem like all the boxes stacked at very high level can be managed, but at all times, it won’t work and can lead to occupational hazards.
3. Stack Evenly
Stacking pallets evenly helps spread the weight equally and prevents shifting. Make sure that there no jagged edges. If the items are not stacked properly, the chances of falling or leaning towards the sides are very likely during racking, transportation and while using equipment like forklifts or pallet jack. If the edges come out of a pallet, it poses safety issues. Also check for any loose parts that are hanging, to avoid getting snagged by machinery or a worker.
4. Keep heaviest items on the bottom layer
Keep in mind that the foundation layer should be made perfect. Because the base should have the proper strength to hold the boxes on the top. The heaviest item should be placed first on the stack to improve its safety features. A stable foundation is the prerequisite for safe building of stackable pallets. For double-stacked pallets, ensure that the weight of the load doesn’t go above the weight limit of the forklift.
5. Strict ‘No’ to damaged Pallets
To save on pallets costs, we often tend to ignore the safety hazards of using an old and damaged pallet. Be careful not to use pallets that have broken boards, protruded edges. Before you organize, make sure that the pallet is safe to handle and have a closer look to check if everything is okay. Then only it is safe to proceed with stacking of boxes. Avoid stack tip-overs from using a damaged pallet. If you are not sure about the usability of reused pallets, never give a second thought for replacing such pallets. Double-stacked pallets should be handled carefully by forklift drivers. While plastic wrapping and securing with straps prevent accidents to a great extent, it is always wise to consult an expert safety officer before proceeding.
Stacking pallets of same size will give an evenly sized pallet which not only reduce the chances of pallet leaning towards sides but also lowers the empty space between stacks. While the packages are of uneven size, always make sure that the heaviest is placed at the bottom layer as it is the foundation layer. Also, stacking of packages which are more or less uniform in size adjacent to each other will keep them secure properly on pallet. Use proper lifting aids such as stabilisers, bars and other handy equipment for double-stacked pallet. Besides, double-stacked pallets should have the same width as that of the boxes, or else safety risks are on the way.
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