How to Upkeep a Loading Dock on the Gulf Coast

An essential part of running any warehouse is to ensure that your equipment is unaffected by the outside elements. On the Gulf Coast, that can be especially difficult with the salt air and sea spray. For example, salt is known to corrode metal, paint and finishes. Rust and defective metal can impair warehouses processes and, by extension, decrease business productivity.

How do you effectively upkeep a loading dock on the Gulf Coast, whether in Florida, Alabama or Mississippi? Here are some of our best tips as collected by our team of experts at Port City Industrial. These tips can apply to various parts of the loading dock, including the leveler plate, overhead door, dock bumpers and more.

Perform Routine Inspections on All Necessary Equipment

The best way to curb any problem is to catch it early. Routine inspections and regular maintenance are ideal for warehouses and their equipment, including all parts of loading docks. Fortunately, at Port City Industrial, our experienced crew offer maintenance and inspection services!

Keep Any Openings Closed and Clean

We understand that loading and unloading cargo requires continual access to the outside. Regardless, you should ensure that your employees know to keep all overhead doors, regular doors and windows closed when necessary. This process will help keep the salt elements out of your warehouse and, more importantly, protect your loading dock equipment!

Protect Any Exposed Metals With Specialized Coating

Purchase a specialized coating for all metal loading dock equipment. This coating can assist in preventing salt corrosion, rust and other forms of deterioration. If you are unsure which coating is best for your equipment, please reach out to our team of experts for recommendations!

Keep Your Employees Informed

Do your warehouse crews know what salt erosion looks like? Is there a dedicated process for reporting defective equipment, or for preserving loading docks? These are important questions to ask when protecting your equipment from outside elements. If you have not already, we recommend establishing a plan of action for you and your employees. Proactiveness is a key component of protecting your loading dock from the volatile outside elements!

Update Equipment as Necessary

When operating a warehouse, financial costs cannot be avoided. Don’t allow the outside elements to worsen deteriorating equipment. When necessary, we recommend recoating, refurbishing or replacing parts of the loading dock. These costs will be cheaper than losing profits or halting productivity. As previously mentioned, being proactive is more effective than any other solution!

As a family-owned business, we love and appreciate living on the Gulf Coast; however, we are not ignorant to the effects that the sea breeze, salt air and humidity can have on loading dock equipment. At Port City Industrial, we offer a variety of warehouse services that are dedicated to keeping your warehouse working. We service and maintain warehouses, as well as install equipment, optimize floor space and modify certain elements.

Visit www.portcitymobile.com or call (251) 277-3444 to get started!

6 Major Warehouse Safety Tips

A safe and secure work environment is essential for employees’ safety, your business’s reputation and your status as a business owner. Warehouses, however, have some of the highest rates for workplace accidents in the country. How do you practice safety in an environment as unpredictable as a warehouse? Here are some of our best tips for warehouse safety.

Report Any Noncompliance to OSHA

Whether or not you perceive noncompliance occurring, it is important to report any doubts or concerns to OSHA. The Occupational Safety and Health Act (1970) states that any employee has “the right to file a complaint and request an OSHA inspection of their workplace if they believe there is a serious hazard or their employer is not following OSHA standards.” Any complaint can be filed online, by mail or by telephone.

Ensure That All Employees Know Safety Procedures

Do your employees know the safety protocol in case of an emergency? Your crews should review and practice safety procedures at least once a quarter. A protocol can include procedures, communication and reporting. We also recommend that a handbook should be on file for all employees to access if necessary.

Provide All Personnel With Personal Protective Gear

One of the best ways to prevent workplace accidents and injuries is to make sure that your employees are properly protected. Personal protective gear can encompass a variety of materials, including hard hats, fluorescent vests, goggles and more. However, nothing is foolproof. If an injury does occur, it should be reported immediately.

Keep the Environment as Clean as Possible

We understand that keeping a warehouse clean can be a demanding task, no matter the size of the establishment. However, organization and cleanliness can go a long way. Ensure that no clutter or fallen objects block major pathways; maintain an organized system; and make sure that your employees do their part to keep the warehouse clean. These steps are especially important if your employees manage toxic materials or waste.

Practice Proper Vehicle Safety

Vehicles are essential to an efficient warehouse. However, they are also high-risk factors for workplace accidents. There are many ways to practice vehicular safety, including making sure that all employees are trained to drive the equipment. Speed limits should always be followed, and reversing should be avoided if necessary. Vehicles should also be regularly inspected and maintained.

Minimize All Lifting Risks When Possible

Physical labor is an accepted and understood aspect of the warehouse industry. Yet, that doesn’t mean it should occur without caution or with abandon. Similar to practicing vehicular safety, there are many ways to ensure your employees are safe while lifting heavy objects. For example, you should train your staff in safely handling and lifting objects. Establish a maximum safe lifting load. If at all possible, avoid physical labor when able. Your employees will thank you.

In summary, nothing is foolproof; however, nothing is more important than the safety of yourself and your employees. As a warehouse manager, it is your responsibility to ensure that safety is enforced in the warehouse. We hope that these tips provide guidance on how to make the workplace safer and more productive. If your warehouse needs to be optimized for safety, then visit www.portcitymobile.com to learn more about the services that we offer here at Port City Industrial.

Why You Should Be Using Pallet Racks

Do you know if your warehouse is working towards its full potential? The first step to running an efficient warehouse is to make sure that every square inch of space is utilized appropriately. If you have not already, you should invest in pallet racks as a storage solution.

Pallet racking has four major components: uprights, beams, row spacers and pallet supports. Similarly, there are four primary reasons why you should use pallet racking as a storage solution for you, your warehouse and your business.

You Can Build and Store Vertically

In past decades, the common warehouse had less than 10,000 square feet available. Now, according to www.wh1.com, the average warehouse unit begins at 25,000 square feet. That may sound like plenty of space available, but it fills quickly. How do you begin to optimize that space without running out of room?

With pallet racking, you can store shipments, equipment and other materials vertically instead of horizontally. Stacking takes advantage of available vertical space, which saves the ground floor for warehouse procedures, heavier equipment and your employees. No matter how high your ceiling is, you can rely on pallet racking as a storage solution.

You Can Organize and Reduce Clutter

It is vital to keep pathways clear for forklifts, other moving equipment, and employees in any warehouse. Disorganization, clutter and other stray objects can hinder procedures or, in some cases, cause a workplace accident. Pallet racking keeps items organized so that your warehouse can keep running efficiently and your employees stay safe.

You Can Customize Pallet Racking to Suit Your Needs

A solution should be as unique as your warehouse and your business. No matter your wares, there is a pallet racking solution available for you. There are many different types of pallet racking available for you to use, including teardrop, drive-in, cantilever and push-back pallet racking. At Port City Industrial, we sell them all and more.

Our highly-qualified team is available for warehouse consultations so that you can ensure that your pallet racking is performing to its best potential. We also offer modification, tear down and relocation services.

You Can Purchase New or Used Pallet Racking

Did you know that used pallet racking works just as well as new builds? Used pallet racking is easier on your budget without sacrificing quality. Used pallet racking is also better for the environment.

Port City Industrial is the largest dealer of used pallet racking on the Gulf Coast. We ensure that our used wares are high-quality and function without issues. We also sell many popular brands, including Interlake Mecalux, Modern Equipment Company and Wireway Husky.

Pallet racking optimizes your storage space, improves your organization and keeps materials secure. Reach out to our team of warehouse professionals today for more information about pallet racking, other warehouse equipment and services that we offer. Visit www.portcitymobile.com or call (251) 277-3444 today to get started. We can’t wait to work with you and your business. We Make Warehouses Work!

5 Tips for Warehouse Safety

A guarantee for any warehouse is its unpredictability. Personnel can be hurt; equipment can fall apart; processes can change. Do you know the procedures and precautions that you can take to decrease potential liabilities? Practicing safety encompasses equipment usage, inspections, apparel and procedures.

Here are 5 essential tips for warehouse safety, regardless of industry.

Teach Employees How to Use Equipment Correctly

Make sure that your employees know how to use the equipment correctly to decrease the chances of any liabilities. A great way to accomplish this is to have only certified personnel operate any warehouse equipment. Certification opportunities include loading and unloading forklifts, maintaining equipment and guiding forklifts.

Schedule Regular Inspections

Take the time to schedule equipment inspections. Your wallet will thank you later! Regular inspections can catch potential damage, wear-and-tear and more. We recommend scheduling any potential maintenance appointments after the inspections so that repairs are not overlooked or forgotten.

If any equipment needs to be replaced, you should also go ahead and schedule the replacements. Malfunctioning equipment can decrease productivity and increase safety risks. Trying to cut corners (and costs!) is not worth the effort in the long run.

Stock, Supply and Wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Do not buy generic personal protective equipment (PPE). You should buy equipment that fits your warehouse. For example, gloves and safety goggles are ideal for workplaces with hazardous materials. Other PPE includes safety vests, hard hats, steel-toe boots, masks and more.

Personal protective equipment is not just for employees, but for visitors too. This is why you should always have spare ones available, because you never know who may enter your warehouse.

Plan and Practice Emergency Procedures

An emergency is not the time to “just wing it.” We recommend that you plan and practice emergency procedures with all of your crews. Common scenarios include fire, lockdowns and natural disasters. Drills can help your employees be prepared for real-life emergencies.

You should also ensure that any new hires are trained in all emergency procedures.

Define All Important Pathways

Are all pathways clear, defined and organized within your warehouse? Paths should be clear for all warehouse equipment, including forklifts and pallet jacks. Reach out to the experts at Port City Industrial if you need assistance with optimizing and organizing pathways! An efficient warehouse layout can boost both productivity and safety.

In summary, the costs associated with enforcing safety are cheaper than any potential lawsuit. Above all else, you and your crews should encourage communication. When you practice, communicate and encourage safety procedures, you protect yourself, your employees and your company. A safe work environment also increases productivity, decreases distress and lessens turnover.

If your warehouse needs to be optimized and assessed for safety, then call the warehouse experts at Port City Industrial. At Port City Industrial, we are dedicated to making your warehouse work. We are the Gulf Coast’s largest used pallet racking dealer, and we offer a variety of services for warehouse operations. Visit www.portcitymobile.com to learn more.

5 Types of Packaging Material That We Offer

Does your warehouse ship a high volume of products? If your warehouse regularly transports items, then you need at least one type of packaging material. Fortunately, at Port City Industrial, we offer a variety of packaging materials and solutions.

Read this blog and decide which materials will serve you best!

Bubble Wrap Provides Surface Protection

Are you searching for a packaging solution that is cost-effective? Look no further than our selection of bubble wrap. Bubble wrap provides plenty of support for wrapping, cushioning and protecting products. Bubble wrap is strong, durable and, most importantly, ready to ship. Browse our selection of antistatic bubble wrap and perforated bubble wrap today.

Stretch Film and Dispenser Bounds Items

Stretch wrap and stretch film are composed of stretchable fabric. Wrap the material around items and pallets for secure packaging, shipping and storage. Our stretch wrap provides superior strength, durability and clinging that can not be found elsewhere.

Steel Strapping and Tools Offer Strength

Did you know that steel strapping is the strongest of all strapping materials? If your warehouse operates within the agriculture, construction or military industry, then you most likely need steel strapping. Steel strapping should be used for any products with rigid and sharp edges.

Reach out to one of our sales representatives today to decide if steel strapping is right for your warehouse. We also sell sealers, tensioners and cutters for steel strapping.

Pallet Jacks Make Transportation Easy

At Port City Industrial, we sell different types of pallet jacks, so that you can find the best solution for your warehouse needs. We offer industrial pallet jacks, electric pallet jacks and low-profile pallet jacks. Pallet jacks allow you and your employees to move products within warehouses, onto loading docks and more.

Pallet jacks we sell include general-purpose, corrosion-resistant, low-profile, powered and multi-directional.

Packing Peanuts are a Low-Cost Solution

Do you need to fulfill gaps or voids within boxes and other shipping containers? Packing peanuts are a low-cost option that is easy to handle. Also, packing peanuts are lightweight, durable, safe and secure. We offer traditional styrofoam peanuts as well as an eco-friendly alternative.

Port City Industrial is dedicated to making your warehouse work, and that includes selling packaging materials. Our bubble wrap, stretch film, steel strapping, pallet jacks and packing peanuts are of the highest quality. Enjoy the peace of mind that comes from knowing your products are protected!

At Port City Industrial, our team of warehouse specialists is highly qualified, trained and skilled. Our products, including loading dock equipment, overhead doors and packing materials, are selected to make your warehouse be as productive as possible. Visit www.portcitymobile.com to learn more about our team and what we do.

5 Types of Equipment That Every Warehouse Needs

If you manage a warehouse, then it can be overwhelming to decide which equipment is right for your business. There are a multitude of options and solutions available. Regardless of the industry, however, there are five pieces of equipment that every warehouse needs to be successful and productive. 

This comprehensive list is compiled by our team of warehouse experts at Port City Industrial. Does your warehouse possess all of the types of equipment that made the list?

Safety Mechanics Protect Your Employees from Workplace Accidents

Protecting your employees is essential to a productive and efficient business. Fortunately, there are a variety of ways to enforce safety in and around your warehouse! Invest in dock equipment control stations, signs, communication light packages and other pieces of equipment. Your employees, your business’s reputation and your wallet will thank you for it.

Loading Dock Equipment Makes Loading and Unloading Easy

Have you ever considered how your loading and unloading processes could be smoother? We have a solution. You can ensure that your warehouse is fully equipped with dock levelers, vehicle restraints, dock lifts and other loading dock equipment. Seals and shelters also protect both your warehouse and your employees.

Reach out to one of our sales representatives today to decide how your process could be improved with loading dock equipment.

Packaging Protects Your Products from Harm

If your warehouse relies on shipping, then you need high-quality packaging to protect your wares. Bubble wrap provides cushioning and wrapping for surface protection. Stretch film keeps items bound for transport. Steel strapping, packaging peanuts and pallet jacks are other packaging essentials. No matter your choice of packaging, make sure that your warehouse is fully stocked!

Commercial Overhead Doors Safeguard Your Warehouse

Overhead doors keep unwanted visitors out of your warehouse; they also protect your wares, your property and your employees. Make sure that the correct commercial overhead door is purchased for your warehouse. At Port City Industrial, we offer a variety of overhead doors, including rolling service doors, high-speed metal doors and sectional steel doors. We also sell insulated sectional steel-back doors, high-speed insulated fabric doors, thermacore doors and high-speed fabric doors.

Consult with one of our team members today to decide which door is right for you!

Warehouse Fans Support Climate Control

Do not underestimate the importance of warehouse fans! Warehouse fans support climate control within your warehouse, as well as keep your employees comfortably cool as they work. We sell many types of warehouse fans, including portable fans, ceiling fans, modular fans and more.

With our product selection, Port City Industrial is dedicated to helping you make your warehouse work. We sell numerous types of warehouse equipment, as well as offer maintenance services. You do not have to buy equipment from us for us to perform maintenance services for you! Port City Industrial is also the largest dealer of used pallet racking on the Gulf Coast.

Visit www.portcitymobile.com to learn more about our team and what we do.

What Separates Port City from the Rest?

As a business owner or warehouse manager, your life is already filled with decisions, both big and small. Which types of equipment should you purchase? Who should you hire? One major decision is deciding on which pallet racking and warehouse equipment supplier is right for you, your business and your warehouse. For any Gulf Coast business seeking warehouse supplies, Port City Industrial is the right answer.

Many aspects set us apart from the rest of the competition in the material handling industry. We offer services, brands and customer service that other companies lack. Here are just a few reasons why we excel at what we do.

We are a Local Business That Supports Other Businesses

At Port City Industrial, we love to support other small businesses. We have worked with clients in New Orleans, LA, Birmingham, AL and even Atlanta, GA. When you work with us, you receive high-quality customer service that you won’t find anywhere else.

We Sell Both New and Used Pallet Racking

Pallet racking is essential for almost any warehouse. We understand that you may want to buy quality equipment without breaking the bank. That is why we offer both new and used pallet racking for sale. Each piece of equipment is carefully selected for quality, durability, appearance and more.

We Offer a Wide Variety of Brands

At Port City Industrial, we believe that options are key to a well-functioning warehouse. We proudly offer a variety of brands of warehouse equipment, including Blue Giant, Rytec, Husky, Roll-A-Way, Dynaco and so many more. Reach out to us today to discover the best fit for your needs!

We Have Decades of Experience

With more than 20 years of experience in the material handling industry, we proudly consider ourselves experts in our field. When you choose Port City Industrial, you choose highly-trained crews and a dedicated team. We all work together to make warehouses work!

We Service and Maintenance Equipment

How many other material handling businesses do you know that will service, maintain and repair your equipment? You do not have to buy from us to benefit from our maintenance services! We also offer after-hours emergency services, because we understand that life does not have a schedule.

We are Family-Owned and Operated

We believe that operating as a family business is one of our strengths. As a family, we believe in putting relationships first and not last. When you work with Port City Industrial, you work with real people and not a corporation! Embrace that small-town experience with big-city service.

Port City Industrial is a licensed general contractor in Mobile, Alabama. We offer material handling equipment, including loading dock equipment, commercial overhead doors and other equipment. We also sell packaging, including bubble wrap, pallet jacks and more. Our high-quality customer service, pallet selection, experience and other services make us the best choice in the material handling industry. 
Learn more about what we do at www.portcitymobile.com or by calling (251) 277-3444 today. We want to help you make your warehouse work!

Why You Should Invest in Loading Dock Equipment

Warehouses can be unpredictable environments, no matter the industry. How do you streamline processes in such an ever-changing field? Within warehouse operations, there are a variety of ways to increase proficiency, boost productivity, assist employees and more. The best way to accomplish this is by investing in loading dock equipment. Your employees, clients and business associates will thank you!

Why should you invest in loading dock equipment? Our experts at Port City Industrial have the answer, including how several types of equipment solve common warehouse problems!

Loading Docks Provide Stability

Whether your warehouse ships or receives products, you should consider investing in loading docks. Loading docks provide stability in loading and unloading processes by establishing efficient interactions. Loading docks can be customized to accommodate available spaces, slopes, door sizes, bumper projections and more unique warehouse characteristics. We offer a variety of loading docks, so we recommend that you reach out today if this sounds like a great solution for you.

Dock Equipment Control Stations Support Safety

The only thing more important in a warehouse than productivity is safety. Dock equipment control stations help encourage safety protocols. Dock equipment can be adjusted to accommodate your warehouse's unique needs; for example, potential solutions include angle push-buttons or microprocessor-based control systems. Improve productivity while enforcing safety when you order a dock equipment control station!

Vehicle Restraints Prevent Potential Problems

Vehicle restraints are a great preventative measure against a variety of mistakes and problems, including unscheduled departures and trailer creeps. Vehicle restraints are ideal for any warehouse, regardless of industry. Restraints are available in hydraulic, mechanical and electronic forms, so find the best solution for your warehouse today!

Dock Lifts Make Warehouses Adaptable

Elevating dock lifts from Blue Giant automatically make any surface a loading dock! The dock lifts can both elevate and lower to certain heights, so that any loading or unloading task becomes easier for your employees. At Port City Industrial, we also offer optional features for specific installation requirements.

Seals and Shelters Encourage Consistency

Dock seals and shelters are a great solution to many warehouse problems, including climate control and safety. Dock seals and shelters conserve energy, maintain temperatures and protect employees. At Port City Industrial, we sell compression dock seals as well as inflatable, rigid, retractable and soft-sided shelters.

Dock Accessories Improve Proficiency

Even if you would prefer to not invest in new loading dock equipment, you should consider purchasing dock accessories! There are a variety of dock accessories available, including dock leveler conversion kits, weather seals and so much more.

There are numerous categories of warehouse equipment for you to choose from. We believe in working together with our clients to navigate and select the best solutions for their warehouses, regardless of industry field. We want to work with you and to make your warehouse work!

At Port City Industrial, we are the Gulf Coast’s largest dealer of used pallet racking. We also proudly provide several other products, including commercial overhead doors, packaging materials, loading dock equipment a

How to Know When It is Time to Service Overhead Doors

Daily production in a warehouse can cause wear and tear damage to your overhead doors. In the bustle of everyday life, however, you and your employees may overlook these seemingly minor details until the door ceases to work efficiently. How should you know when to service or replace your overhead doors? The answer varies depending on your overhead door’s current condition, age, function, type of door and more. However, there are usually consistent signs, no matter the variables.

Here are some of the biggest and most common signs, as noted by the warehouse experts at Port City Industrial!

  1. Any odd noises or malfunctions are the most prominent sign that it is time for you to service your overhead doors. You should ensure that your employees recognize what to look for and how to identify potential problems with your overhead doors.
  2. When was the last time that you had your overhead door serviced? If it has been a year or longer since your warehouse doors were maintained, then it is time to schedule a service appointment! We recommend a servicing appointment at least once a year, because that will offset potential costs in the long run.
  3. Deteriorating rollers are a sign that you should service your overhead doors, if not replace them completely. Worn, chipped or cracked rollers are potential hazards not just for the efficiency of the workplace, but for safety as well. Consider replacing your rollers whenever you get your door serviced.
  4. Have you checked your cables lately? Worn or deteriorating cables can cause major problems down the road for your warehouse production. If your door is malfunctioning, then the cables could be a plausible reason. An experienced maintenance technician can decipher this issue for you.
  5. An off-balanced overhead door is an unproductive door. Are you noticing that your overhead door is not properly balanced? That means it is time to schedule a servicing appointment!
  6. Are the door tracks clear? Hindrances like debris and rust can keep your door from functioning properly. While small adjustments can be completed by you or your employees, we recommend that any major adjustments to your door tracks are conducted by a professional.
  7. Weatherstripping does more than keep the cold outside of your warehouse. Weatherstripping also blocks water, dust and dirt. If you are noticing that your weatherstripping is deteriorating, or that outside elements are invading your warehouse, then you should talk to a professional.

Ultimately, the most important and telltale sign that it is time for your door to be serviced is any type of door malfunction. Whether a noticeable issue or not, a malfunctioning door can not only affect your warehouse’s production rate but your employees’ safety as well. At Port City Industrial, our experienced crews are able to maintain and service any warehouse equipment, regardless of whom you purchased it from. That list of equipment includes your warehouse overhead doors!

With more than 20 years of experience, Port City Industrial is dedicated to Making Your Warehouses Work. Visit www.portcitymobile.com or call (251) 277-3444 today to learn more about scheduling a servicing appointment.

Should I Buy Used or New Pallet Racking?

Every warehouse is unique and deserves solutions specific to its needs. Which loading dock should you purchase? Does your industry require high-speed doors to preserve your internal environment? How much pallet racking should you purchase? The questions are limitless, and the possibilities even moreso.

As the largest dealer of used pallet racking on the Gulf Coast, we have many Port City Industrial clients ask if used or new pallet racking is better for their warehouse. Ultimately, that answer is up to you; there is no right or wrong decision. Which elements do you value the most?

Pros of Used Pallet Racking

Pros of New Pallet Racking

Both new and used pallet racking have their own unique benefits. Your warehouse’s capabilities, such as measurements and intended uses, will also affect which type of pallet racking you should buy.

How Do You Decide Which Type to Invest In?

No matter which type of pallet racking you purchase, pallet racking is an ideal solution for maximizing vertical space in a warehouse. When installed correctly, pallet racking is strong, sturdy and secure for both your packaging and employees. At Port City Industrial, we want to help you customize and design a warehouse system that meets your needs and exceeds your expectations. Experience the Port City Industrial difference when you visit www.portcitymobile.com today!