A pallet (sometimes caned a skid) is a flat transport structure that supports goods in a stable fashion while being lifted by a forklift, pallet jack, front loader or other jacking device. A pallet is the structural foundation of a unit load which allows handling and storage efficiencies. The pallets represent an attempt to unify dry cargo loads. It is a flat tray upon which several articles can be placed, which can be then handled as one article. It’s essential features in the context of freight transport is that it should be rigid and sturdy enough to support its toad and should be ‘constructed so as to allow mechanized handling. Metal strapping or binder twine, nets, plastic films or more elaborate restraining devices are used to secure the articles to the pallets. The development of pallet system has also led to the growth of handling equipment of forklift trucks etc. Pallets have to be customized according to the requirements of requirements of different categories of product.
The pallets can be in the form of:
- Wooden or non timber pallet.
- Four way entry pallet or box type pallet.
Benefits of Palletisation :
1. Reduction in time needed to load and unload the products from the vehicle.
2. Reduces the warehouse space required for storage.
3. The use of fork trucks and pallets in sea transport has lead to saving of time in various loading activities. This in turn has reduced waiting time of vessels (Ships)
4. Individual packages can be assembled in the plant on to a pallet according to a single customer order.
5. It has also been found that palletisation helps reduced not only the rate of damage in transit but also cuts the delivery time. (Rebates up to 30% have been quoted by shippers, which when added to other savings incurred due to palletisation add up to substantial incentive)
Disadvantages of Palletisation :
The most apparent draw back in palletisation in lacks of uniformity in pallets. More than 1500 types of pallets exist in the industry.
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