Why Plastic Pallets are Safer than Wooden Pallets
03 Aug 2017
Until relatively recently, most companies that needed pallets to transport and store their products would have used the standard wooden type. But now there are other options which could have multiple benefits for the industries involved.
Plastic pallets, in particular, offer a number of advantages over the wooden versions, especially in the area of workplace safety, which should of course be uppermost on every industry’s agenda.
Health and Safety Benefits
Because plastic pallets are lighter than their wooden counterparts, they are less likely to result in injuries associated with their manual handling. Back injuries are a major cause of worker absence in many industries, so anything which reduces the risk should be welcomed.
In addition, plastic pallets are made from solid moulded plastic, which means they contain no component parts, such as nails, to break free and cause injury to those handling them. Being plastic instead of wood means they have no splinters to break off, and their moulded rounded edges mean they are free of potentially troublesome sharp edges.
As well as being excellent news for the workers handling the pallets, this is also good news for the industry as a whole, as products and their sometimes all too fragile packaging are far less likely to be damaged by sharp edges and damaged pallets during transportation.
Another major benefit of using plastic pallets is that they offer a far more hygienic transportation solution than the wooden ones.
Completely sealed, they are able to withstand all temperatures and levels of humidity, so wherever in the world you send them they should come back in the same condition.
This is, of course, especially important to those industries which need to transport goods to hot desert countries or, alternatively, humid ones, where the older wooden pallets may sustain environmental damage on a regular basis. Wooden pallets can be prone to cracking and splitting caused by exposure to extremes of temperature and humidity.
While wood is liable to absorb moisture and can potentially harbour harmful bacteria, plastic pallets have been specially treated so that will never happen. This means mould cannot grow on their surface, which is especially of benefit to the food industry – food and drink can be safely transported across continents without the worry of cross-contamination caused by damaged or contaminated pallets.
Having pallets which can be thoroughly cleaned after use also means they can be used in areas and rooms which have to be hygienically maintained at all times without compromising on the cleanliness of the location.
It seems obvious, then, that plastic pallets have several benefits relating to health and safety and hygiene which many industries could use to their financial and operational advantage. If your wooden pallets are looking past their best and causing you issues, you would do far worse than consider swapping over to the plastic version. You won’t regret it.