An Overview of Material Handling

November 13, 2019 11:50 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

“Material handling” is a fancy term for a simple concept: it describes the handling of goods within warehouses and other storage facilities. Forklifts are a major element of material handling in Lafayette, LA, and they’re our specialty here at George’s Lift Truck Service, LLC. You may also require other types of equipment for material handling. Here are five categories of equipment that are essential for moving your goods and inventory:

  • Transport: As the name implies, transport equipment moves goods around your warehouse or retail establishment. Forklifts are a common item in this category, and the most versatile, since they can move cargo around tight spaces and make stacking possible. Other forms of transport equipment include hand trucks, dollies, pallet jacks and conveyor belts. Most warehouses contain a combination of transport equipment, especially if goods ship directly to consumers from the warehouse and efficient movement is vital to ensuring quick delivery.
  • Unit load: Forklift and other transport equipment cannot operate without items in the unit load category. This equipment secures loads to restrict movement and make loading easier—and safer. Wood pallets are one type of load equipment, and forklifts cannot operate without them, as pallets are built to be handled by forklift prongs. Other items that assist with unit load include tote pans, skids, bins, baskets, bags and crates. The main purpose of unit load equipment is to reduce the number of trips required to load and unload inventory, and it can also reduce the costs of material handling.
  • Storage: There is no point in unloading goods if you do not have a place to store them. Cabinets and industrial-strength shelving are staples of every warehouse. They work to maximize vertical storage so there is floorspace to move items and add inventory. Pallet racks are also required to stack pallet loads and ensure maximum height for storage. They also make a great addition to any warehouse that uses forklifts. You likely want to take advantage of the vertical lift capabilities, and that will not happen without forklifts.
  • Safety products: Your warehouse operation will not move smoothly if you are constantly having to deal employee injuries. Safety baskets keep workers safe when they are on lifts, and gas cylinder cages, overhead door track guards, and safety bollards keep employees and equipment safe from sudden falls and failures. Many of these items are required by federal and local laws, so you’ll want to take all necessary steps to ensure workers follow all safety precautions and use the right equipment.
  • Order pickers: This category is best represented in the retail market, especially among large retailers like Amazon. Order picker platforms and stock pickers find specific items for shipment or movement to the storefront. Pickers locate the item and help workers find it quickly. Order pickers are available in an assortment of sizes to handle a variety of retail goods.

George’s Lift Truck Service, LLC offers a vast assortment of material handling products in Lafayette, LA for all your warehousing needs. Contact us today if it is time for an upgrade.

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