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4 tips for dealing with narrow aisles

Warehouses have become more crowded in recent years, with SKUs multiplying and floor space growing scarcer. This means that most warehouse operators have had to maximize their available space by increasing density. Consequently, narrow aisles with tall shelving have become the norm. Here are some tips that will optimize how your high-density warehouse functions.


1.Make sure employees are aware of the risks

If your warehouse has narrow aisles and tall shelves, the amount of clearance that’s available will be limited. This can result in more frequent accidents. Pedestrian traffic in particular becomes a bigger liability.

The heightened risk of having a collision also means there’s an increased likelihood for property and inventory damage. Plus, with higher shelves, a collision could have catastrophic consequences. It’s important for all warehouse employees to remain vigilant.


2.Choose the right trucks for your warehouse

It’s important to ensure that your warehouse is equipped with the appropriate lift trucks. Normal forklifts aren’t designed to be operated in narrow aisle configurations, which is why reach and turret trucks are typically employed to navigate them. These vehicles are designed to operate safely with less space, allowing your workers to access the materials they need without endangering themselves or your merchandise.


3.Employ smart warehouse design strategies

Make certain that your warehouse is organized well enough that your lift trucks and other vehicles can navigate the premises without issue. This means making sure there are adequate safety measures throughout the facility to protect your workers, especially if there is a lot of foot traffic. If your Turret Trucks or Stock Pickers are running on Wire Guidance, consider installing End of Aisle Control at critical intersections to force lifts to slow down. Another smart strategy is slowing down the equipment, not only will your employees be safer, but you’ll also have less damage to your building, your product and your warehouse storage system.

Re-evaluating your warehouse design is especially important if you’re converting from regular to narrow aisles. It’s also crucial to routinely review all safety measures within your warehouse.


4.Don’t skimp on operator training

It’s essential that you make sure every operator is comfortable with the floor plan in your warehouse and knows how to safely use all equipment. This involves making sure they can safely operate lift trucks and all other vehicles. Workers should also be trained to spot and report signs of trouble with their equipment.


Forklift sales and fleet management in Western Canada

If you’re looking for new or used forklifts in Calgary, Edmonton or Vancouver,ARPAC has you covered. We also offer operator certification and warehouse design services. Contact us today to find out more.