Rack protectors are a great way to protect a distributor against the incalculable costs of a rack collapse.

To determine how much a company could potentially save by purchasing rack guards, picture the worst-case scenario: a domino effect where all of the racks collapse, the products are damaged, and workers are injured or killed. How much inventory is usually stored? What is it worth? How much would a lawsuit cost if someone were injured or killed? Odds are, the total sum would be millions of dollars.

Compare this number to the manufacturer’s quote for rack guards. Purchasing rack guards is usually less expensive than repairing or replacing racks, and it is definitely less expensive than a warehouse tragedy.

“Having rack guards can save your personnel and products from a catastrophic event,” says John Weber, president of Omega Industrial Products, Inc., Saukville, Wisconsin.

Unfortunately, many warehouses wait until they have replaced the rack’s legs several times or they have had a major accident before they decide to purchase rack guards. Replacing the rack legs can be very costly. Distributors not only have to pay for the materials, but they incur additional costs such as loss of production time, labor and the inability to use that area until the repair is made.

When it comes down to it, rack guards are inexpensive insurance against the potentially astronomical costs associated with product loss, workplace injury, insurance fees, fatalities or even lawsuits.

Angelica Dudenhoefer of Angelica Communications, LLC, is a freelance writer based in Milwaukee.