Lighting Solutions for a Mezzanine Installation
Good lighting is essential in a warehouse. A poorly illuminated warehouse will contribute to unnecessary errors, reduced productivity, and poor health of your workforce. Most warehouses perform a variety of functions and an adequate lighting design is challenging at the best of times. Add in a mezzanine level and you add another layer to the challenge. Therefore, if you are installing a mezzanine floor, your warehouse lighting design may need a rethink.
A healthy approach:
Newly installed mezzanine levels will block previously utilised light sources, such as skylights and ceiling lights. So while planning your mezzanine installation, you also need to think about your lighting plan. The main thing to consider is that warehouse workers need to be able to see oncoming vehicles, pedestrians, and other obstacles. This is obviously in order to prevent accidents and injuries, but adequate warehouse lighting is also good for the health and well being of staff. Poor lighting can affect an employee’s psychological health if it makes the working environment depressing and drab. Additionally, employees need to be able to read signs, labels, and paperwork easily. Bad lighting can contribute to reduced productivity and picking errors from eyestrain and fatigue.
What are your options then? The most obvious option is installing lights underneath the mezzanine level, to compensate for the loss of light from above. If the area underneath will be mostly used for storage, then you won’t need to add in too many lights. But if you’re going to use that area for picking, value added services, or production, you’ll need to speak to a lighting expert to help you design the best lighting plan. You could also opt for grid-mesh flooring for your mezzanine, although that depends on what you’re going to use your mezzanine level for. Grid mesh is more ideal for walkovers, catwalks, and ramps. However, since the grating allows natural light to reach lower levels, then utilising it where you can will help.
Getting it right:
Light levels in a warehouse will be affected by the reflectance of surfaces. A black or dark coloured surface will not be as reflective as a white or shiny one and will require more lights. Keep this in mind when planning your mezzanine and lighting design. Light placement is important too. Mounting lights in the middle of the aisles instead of directly above shelves or pallets will minimise shadows and help ensure maximum lighting uniformity. Uniformity in lighting is vital as workers must be able to look up and down the stacks of product without constantly having to adjust their eyes. Placement and uniformity will aid in reducing the level of discomfort and health issues of your staff.
Choosing the right lighting system for your mezzanine design can be a challenge. Get it right and you’ll end up with a productive and healthy work environment. Get it wrong and you could end up having to redesign down the track or cop the consequences. Warehouse managers, owners, and designers have a variety of options when selecting the lighting system for a mezzanine design. No matter what type of system they choose though, lighting placement and uniformity is key. With the right lighting scheme, your new mezzanine can be a comfortable and safe place to work on and under.
Beatrice writes creatively and has worked in many warehouse and service control related roles which is why she has such great incite into the industry. For more info visit: http://dynamicws.com.au/