RNW Rack NetWork – Frequently Asked Questions
What does RNW do?
RNW is an engineering and expert inspection services firm that specializes in pallet racking and warehouse safety.
How long has RNW been around?
RNW was founded in 2002 by Tony Mulholland (P.Eng).
Does RNW work only on big warehouses?
RNW works on facilities of all sizes and complexities.
Does RNW have the manpower to inspect multiple, large scale facilities throughout Canada and the USA?
RNW has conducted national inspection programs for many of North America’s largest corporations.
Why is rack safety important?
Providing a safe workplace is a warehouse operator’s legal responsibility. Managers are liable if any of their workers are injured, or worse, while on the job. Proper rack safety measures protect your employees, products and equipment – and keep you compliant with CSA and OSHA regulations.
What will government inspectors be looking for if they visit us?
The authorities generally ask three questions:
- Have the capacity limits of the racking been calculated by a Professional Engineer?
- Has the racking been inspected by an outside expert at some point in the past year?
- Is there an internal procedure in place for routine monthly inspections of the facility?
Is RNW fully ISO 9001 certified?
Yes, RNW is the only rack engineering / inspection services firm to receive the full ISO 9001 certification.
Do RNW’s engineers have their full P.Eng (Professional Engineer) certification?
RNW employs the racking industry’s largest team of Professional Engineers devoted solely to the safe operation of racking structures.
Does RNW work in the USA?
Yes, RNW works throughout the United States.
Does RNW work in high seismic zones? rural areas? refrigerators and freezers?
Yes, RNW works in high seismic areas such as along the west coast, rural areas like northern Canada and Alaska, and in the harshest blast freezers around.
Do RNW’s inspectors and engineers speak French?
Yes, RNW has a number of staff that are fluent in French.
Does RNW work on ASRS systems, cantilever, drive-in, push-back and other specialized racking structures?
Yes, at one time or another we’ve worked on pretty much every type of racking structure you can imagine.
Does RNW manufacture or sell racking?
No, RNW’s Expert Inspectors provide truly independent advice, unlike many of our competitors whose primary business is selling new rack, repair parts or other services.
Is RNW Tony Mulholland’s company?
Yes, Tony Mulholland (P.Eng) is RNW’s owner and Chief Engineer. With over 30 years of experience, Tony is widely considered to be the foremost expert in the racking industry.
What is an e-Service?
RNW’s e-Services include the e-Plaque (a fully updateable touch screen capacity sign), e-Inspector (an interactive app that delivers inspection reports in real-time) and e-Learning (individual remote training sessions). They can be delivered via the internet anywhere in the world.
Where is RNW located?
RNW is based in the Toronto, Canada area but has engineers on staff at our branch offices. RNW can provide site services by local experts and seal documents in all provinces and most states.
Does RNW have to tour our facility to give us a price quote?
No, if you’ll provide some basic information about your facility, we can usually have a price quote in your hands within a day or two.
How do I get more info and/or a price quote?
Fill out the “request a quote” form at the bottom of any page, or call 888-318-5561 x 230 and we’ll have a quote underway within 24 hours.
Does my pallet racking have to be inspected?
Yes, Canadian regulations state that all facilities with pallet racking must conduct regular expert inspections. American OSHA regulations state that all facilities must have a program for “systematic identification of workplace hazards”.
Can’t I just inspect the racking by myself?
Routine monthly (partial) inspections can be conducted by internal staff but annual (full) inspections must be conducted by outside experts. CSA A344 stipulates that an expert must specialize in pallet racking, have structural engineering knowledge, perspective that has been developed over many facilities and be under the supervision of a Professional Engineer (P.Eng).
How often should my racking be inspected?
This is determined by a Professional Engineer based on the characteristics of the specific facility. For most facilities, annual inspections are required.
What will RNW’s inspectors be looking for?
RNW searches for damages (such as those caused by lift trucks), missing parts (such as anchors or safety pins) and the overall integrity of the racking structure (alignment or out of plumb).
How long will RNW’s inspector(s) be on-site?
This can vary from a couple hours for a very small facility to a couple of weeks for a very large facility. In most cases a day is usually sufficient.
Will RNW “shut us down” if they find something unsafe?
No, but severe damages can sometimes require that the impacted bays be unloaded and taken out of service until they can be repaired.
How disruptive is the inspection? Do we have to stop work?
No, your business can operate uninterrupted.
Will the inspection report be stamped by a P.Eng (Professional Engineer)?
Yes, all reports are reviewed and sealed by a Professional Engineer who assumes responsibility for the content of the report.
Does RNW work at heights?
Although most inspections are conducted from the floor, RNW has staff trained in working at heights. RNW also has specialized rope-access personnel when access from the ceiling is required.
How are the individual damages tracked and identified?
Each damage is assigned a trackable bar code number that is applied by sticker to the racking and recorded electronically by RNW.
How does RNW assess the severity of the damages that are found?
All damages are rated on a color-coded (green – yellow – red) and numerical scale from 1 (minor/cosmetic) to 9 (major/highly dangerous).
How much does an inspection cost?
Expert inspection costs vary based on the size of the facility and the condition of the racking. The cost of an expert rack inspection is often comparable to the annual cost of fire extinguisher inspections.
PSR Capacity Reports
What does PSR stand for?
Pre-start health & Safety Review. PSR’s are known as Capacity Reports in most areas.
Does my racking have to have a PSR Capacity Report?
Yes, all local governments require some form of a PSR Capacity Report. In Ontario, for example, Ministry of Labour regulation # 851, section 7 requires that employers must not load or operate racks until a PSR has been completed and sealed by a Professional Engineer.
What happens if I make a change, or addition, to my racking at some point in the future?
A PSR can be amended whenever changes are made to the rack. A good PSR is written in a manner that allows maximum flexibility to expand and/or reconfigure the racking at a future date.
How much does a PSR Capacity Report cost?
The cost of a PSR is largely a function of the number of different types of racking, and the number of elevations, in the facility. With a layout diagram and a few photos, we can usually provide a price quotation within 24 hours.
What is included in RNW’s building permit submittal service?
Services include: analysis of the emergency lighting system, fire protection system, egress/exiting and floor slab capacity. RNW will complete all schedules, application reports and compliance reports. RNW will stamp drawings, visit the site once and the municipality once. The price includes all communication with the municipality up to the initial submission.
What is a Building Code Compliance Report?
Where a building permit already exists, a Building Code Compliance Report will identify specific areas where your business is, and is not, compliant with applicable regulations.
How much does the building permit submittal service cost?
Building permit prices are generally a function of the completeness of the client’s existing paperwork, and how much paperwork is left to be completed.
What does the training cover?
RNW’s experts will train your staff in the correct methodology for conducting the routine inspections that are required in most areas. The sessions cover CSA standard A344, common terminology and legal considerations. Training makes your facility safer and minimizes liability for company managers.
Will my staff receive a certificate after they complete the course?
Repairs & Guarding
What are CertiRack repair products?
CertiRack’s top quality repair products are certified by our Professional Engineers and are fully Ministry of Labour compliant.
Will the repaired racking be restored to its original capacity?
Yes – or even greater!
Is it usually better to repair, or replace, the damaged component?
This sometimes varies from one individual damage to the next, but repair is a better option in a majority of cases. Repaired parts are usually stronger, more versatile, more environmentally responsible – and have a shorter lead-time!
Will the repairs be certified by a Professional Engineer?
CertiRack repairs are certified by our Professional Engineers.
Do we have to buy repair products or services from RNW after the inspection?
No, RNW offers truly independent advice. We provide you with highly detailed information based on our years of experience and expertise. You can choose to take whatever action is best for your business.
What are CertiRack guarding products?
CertiRack guarding products are high quality, high visibility products designed to reduce the risk (and the resultant cost and liability) of future structural damages and failures.
Will I have to get a welding permit to have the repair work done?
No! Bringing a torch into your facility is one of the most un-safe things you could possibly do. CertiRack repairs can be completed with only minimal disruption to your daily operations.