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Libra Systems weighs up the benefits of specialist racking with Wickens

At Libra Systems’ warehouse, cold rolled steel sections from its adjacent manufacturing plant were stored on the floor before being loaded on to transport for distribution throughout the UK. Due to health and safety, as well as ease of access, products could only be stacked two to three packs high. However, with a floor to ceiling height of seven metres, this meant considerable space was wasted.

Libra Systems identified the need to significantly improve storage facilities at its warehouse and invited racking specialist Wickens to the site to discuss potential options. Libra Systems’ managing director, Simon Scowcroft, explains more:

"Before our new racking was installed steel sections were being stored on the floor, with no real system in place. This was inefficient and resulted in double or triple handling of the products as packs constantly needed to be shifted around the floor as we picked the next items for distribution. As well as the risk of damage to the sections, this meant unnecessary time was spent looking for the lengths we needed.

"Time wasn’t the only thing wasted as, despite the fact our warehouse is around seven metres tall, we were only using a fraction of the available space by stacking packs on the floor. I knew that as the business grew we would need to implement more robust storage and handling procedures so decided to look into various racking options.

"Wickens were recommended to us by a local fork lift truck company who had worked with the company in the past, so we invited them to visit our site to discuss requirements with the warehouse team. They recommended a cantilever racking system which made the best possible use of the available floor to ceiling height, while also taking into account fork lift truck capacity and access for fire doors and entrances.

"We asked three racking companies to quote for the job and Wickens was the most competitive. The fact they also manufacture all the racking components meant I was confident they could provide a bespoke solution to meet our needs."

The installation took just three days to complete, resulting in minimal downtime for Libra Systems. Neil Bates, sales manager for Wickens, comments: "This was a fairly straightforward project but it required a high level of coordination between Wickens and the warehouse team. We worked closely together throughout the installation, with the warehouse staff moving product out of the way so we could erect the system and filling the racking once it was in place.

Simon adds: "The difference the new racking has made to the warehouse is significant. We are now making the most of the space available to us and can store products of different lengths more easily, meaning our business is operating more efficiently and safely."

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