Retrofitting Safety: Going Out of the Box
Ideally, safety systems are built into industrial facilities as the buildings are constructed. This can provide for providing employees with the best protection from day one of the facility use. However, it’s not always possible to plan for all operations; a mixing area could turn into a walkway, and a pallet drop area could pop up in the middle of a pick module. In addition, safety regulations change over the years, and what may have passed as safe in the past no longer is valid.
It’s important to take a closer look at how operations and regulations have changed each year. If you have an area or application that needs to be secured because of changed operations, or updated due to regulation changes, you can find a safety solution that works. However, in many cases, you may need a custom solution to meet standards as well as keep your operations intact.
For example, we worked with a large record retention company that was updating mezzanines in order to meet new safety standards and create a safer environment for its employees. Due to the size of the facility, many areas had space limitations with low ceilings and limited depth on the mezzanine. The company also had installed many of our Pivot model safety gates in the past and wanted to install the same design in the new areas.
Originally designed for an application with a low ceiling, the facility’s vertical space limitations would not be an issue. However, the additional constraints of depth and load height ruled out our traditional Pivot gate model as a solution. In order to provide the necessary level of safety and keep operations unchanged for our customer, our engineers designed a High Pallet Pivot gate with a configuration that included multiple-pivot points that allowed the depth and height of the unit to be modified while still accommodating pallets of material. Operations were unchanged while the employees working on the mezzanines were much safer with the new safety gates in place.
If you need to update the safety in areas in your facility, make sure to keep in mind that you may not find an out of the box solution that will ensure your operations stay the same. Make sure to discuss the operational processes and application that you are looking to secure with the safety gate manufacturer, as well as challenges like limited depth of the platform, an extra wide load or very unique procedure.