Now the specific precautions that must be taken into account to stack and store these materials correctly. Possibly the best thing to do is to take some of the materials that present the most problems to store them and try to determine if they are being stacked and stored correctly.
Employees can reach certain conclusions about the specific materials if they can answer the following questions:
- Does the pile have an adequate base?
- Does the pile have a prudent height?
- Have the pile materials been placed, crossed and locked correctly?
- Are the spaces around the piles kept clear and is there room to move around them?
If the employee can answer with a “yes” to all the questions related to the materials with which they work daily, the piles will not fall, the floors will not be overloaded, and everyone will be able to approach the pile when they need materials, without getting hurt. Neglected stacking can result in injury. Losses can also occur as a result of damaged parts and the disappearance of small things. Management is interested in both aspects of the problem. Always look for the most experienced piling contractors in Melbourne before sending out a tender. Efficiency and physical integrity cannot be separated, they go hand in hand.
- When stacking any material, the employee must make sure that they do it on a floor that can support the load and that the pile has been made up to a prudent height.
- When stacking full bags, the employee have to vary the direction of each layer by rotating the bags 90º, so that each bag rests on two bags below.
- The boxes must be placed crosswise and also place enough ribbons crossed between the layers so that the pile is stable. Remember that each ribbon layer must be at right angles to the material below.
- The materials that arrive in bundles tied with metal ribbons present special dangers when they have to be opened. When a worker opens a package or a box, secured with metal tape, they should wear eye protection, resistant gloves and be very careful so that the metal ends do not hit their face or body.
- The same precautions should be taken when cutting cables, and wires.
- When using motorised trucks to stack, the piles generally get taller. Here again, people must take into account the base and the height. Be careful not to block sprinklers; the materials must be at a distance of at least 45 cm. of the sprinklers.
An important aspect to remember is that employees should not run the risk of the pile falling, therefore whenever they can they will have to cross the materials or place strips between the different layers to lock the material and so that the pile is so firm as possible.
The lesson that everyone should learn when a building collapses because floors have been overloaded, is that the load capacity of the floor must be strictly observed. Stacking material from floor to ceiling without considering the limit load is extremely dangerous.
Finally, it is necessary to remember that nothing can replace a person in material handling programs. Consequently, they must always remember the importance of lifting correctly. About a quarter of all disabling injuries are due to incorrect handling and lifting of objects. When stacking or storing materials, all recommended accident prevention measures must be observed.