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Warehouse storage issues due to leaking roof

SQF Packaging Warehouse aisles storage issues

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#1 Sweet'n'low

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Posted 25 July 2019 - 07:21 PM

Hi everyone,

 

I am encountering yet another issue and was hoping for some insight. 

 

Our warehouse which stores raw material and finished goods is having an issue of aisles being cluttered with plastic regrind, finished goods, and sometimes raw material. We did get a minor on our audit this past April in regards to our aisle being cluttered, and how it causes issues with picking parts and cleanliness. 

 

The reason we need to store items in our aisles is because we are not able to fully utilize rack space that remains vacant due to a leaky roof that water will leak onto product, so we call our aisles "temporary" storage. 

 

In a recent meeting, I bought up the issue again and how there were many vacancies in our storage racks. I was told "we all know the roof leaks and that's why we cant store items on racks" and then directed me to find another solution. 

 

Root cause analysis has been conducted for this issue, yet upper management wants a different solution to work instead of fixing a roof (which costs $$$) and ridding the issue entirely (at least for the next 20-30 years). 

 

Can these actions be reported to anyone at SQF anonymously? There are some other things that the auditor did not catch that I wish I could have been more upfront about, like having vegetation killer on our chemical list, when it's not because we have winter weather removes the weeds for us. It is making it difficult for me to operate on such unethical standards. 



#2 Ryan M.

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Posted 25 July 2019 - 07:35 PM

You are in a tough spot.  I'm not sure there is any anonymous reporting you can do to SQF.  But, even if there was an outlet like this wouldn't upper management point it to you anyhow?

 

I know how frustrating this can be, been there before, and been there currently really.  We all want the best for the facility and operations to operate with food safety and quality in mind, but honestly the #1 priority for a company is to stay in business and make money.  Somehow we have to swim through the waters to prioritize resources.  I would recommend you approach it from another angle, where perhaps they can do sections of the roof at a time over a longer time period to spread out the cost.  This makes it more appealing.  Or, you can suggest moving the racking where the roof isn't leaking, if that is even a possibility.

 

The thing is...you'll have to get a bit creative, be dogged, and don't lose your determination.  Even small wins and doing a bit at a time versus full fledged is progress.

 

However, if this doesn't work with the company I advise you to find alternative employment.  Passing an SQF audit will be the least of their worries if they continue down that path.



#3 SQFconsultant

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Posted 25 July 2019 - 08:10 PM

In many ways I agree with Ryan.

 

The company should consider it luck they did not get a major for the potential of contamination from a roofing issue.

 

All Auditors miss things, there really is a LOT of stuff to look it and under varying cicumstances, like dry weather for instance not showing evidence of a leaking roof, etc.

 

It is when an Auditor misses a gigantic issue or looks the other way that is the big concern.

 

As a former inspector for a hotel chain I had no power over leased restaurant operations and when I saw things that were serious in nature all I could do was let the hotel company know and that is as far as it went - however every once in a while I blew the whistle and contacted a local health board agency, OSHA, etc.

 

In your case you could report things simply by contacting SQFI directly, they will feed back the details to the CB and I imagine the CB will either order up an immediate inspection or make note for the next audit.

 

The problem is you know the issues and the trace back would not be that hard to do.

 

My suggest is that you keep on pressing your company to fix thos things that need to be fixed - because next time it won't be a minor it will be major for potential contamination.


Warm regards,

 

 

Glenn Oster

Glenn Oster Consulting, LLC

 

SQF On-Site System Development & Implementation Consultant

You can DIY or Bring in the Professionals 

 

Small to Mid-Size Food, Food Packaging & Food Logistic/Storage 

SQF GAP Analysis of Operational & Capital Needs

Internal Auditor Training Program / United States of America, Canada & Centro America

772.646.4115 USA // glenn@glennosterconsulting.com

Boquete, Panama & Yorktown, Virginia USA

www.GlennOsterConsulting.com

 

 

SQF Pre-Development GAP Analysis -

Operational & Capital Compliance

https://bit.ly/2UeemhP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


#4 Sweet'n'low

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 02:13 PM

In many ways I agree with Ryan.

 

The company should consider it luck they did not get a major for the potential of contamination from a roofing issue.

 

All Auditors miss things, there really is a LOT of stuff to look it and under varying cicumstances, like dry weather for instance not showing evidence of a leaking roof, etc.

 

It is when an Auditor misses a gigantic issue or looks the other way that is the big concern.

 

As a former inspector for a hotel chain I had no power over leased restaurant operations and when I saw things that were serious in nature all I could do was let the hotel company know and that is as far as it went - however every once in a while I blew the whistle and contacted a local health board agency, OSHA, etc.

 

In your case you could report things simply by contacting SQFI directly, they will feed back the details to the CB and I imagine the CB will either order up an immediate inspection or make note for the next audit.

 

The problem is you know the issues and the trace back would not be that hard to do.

 

My suggest is that you keep on pressing your company to fix thos things that need to be fixed - because next time it won't be a minor it will be major for potential contamination.

I appreciate the feedback. In regards to the trace back to me, everyone in the plant knows the issues. Roof leaks, broken forklifts being used, cleaning not being completed as necessary, etc. Supervisors know these issues, employees in different departments as well. When the entry level (temporary) employee can spot that theres an issue not being fixed, you know its bad. 



#5 Scampi

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 03:08 PM

Call SQFI from your personnel cell phone---no emails and report them

 

may i also suggest a call to the FDA??????????????????????

 

This is how the whole peanut corp of american catastrophe started so I have ZERO patience for this stuff............they are blatantly putting peoples lives on the line.  The FDA could rule products were adulterated WHEN they do a swabathon at your facility

 

as well as your personnel integrity is on the line here


Because we always have is never an appropriate response!


#6 Sweet'n'low

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 03:39 PM

Call SQFI from your personnel cell phone---no emails and report them

 

may i also suggest a call to the FDA??????????????????????

 

This is how the whole peanut corp of american catastrophe started so I have ZERO patience for this stuff............they are blatantly putting peoples lives on the line.  The FDA could rule products were adulterated WHEN they do a swabathon at your facility

 

as well as your personnel integrity is on the line here

Unfortunately, the FDA can't do much about the issue. We are a packaging manufacturer and not included in FSMA. I have considered OSHA many times, then thought that there had to be a way to get the CB involved. 



#7 Scampi

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 03:59 PM

Swab your packaging for salmonella........one positive hit will allow you to do something

 

I had good luck calling SQFI directly when i was having issues with a CB at the time.........they need to protect the standards, so it's amazing how fast things start to happen once you reach out to them


Because we always have is never an appropriate response!


#8 3560lynne

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 04:09 PM

What quotes did you get from roofing companies? New roof over old? Complete tear off? Patch job? I will assume higher ups are more likely to appeal to a patch job. Patch job work is usually guaranteed for 12 months. In the mean time, without knowing the extent of the leak or leaks there are alternative temporary fixes to return to maximizing your space. Installation of a leak diverter within the building for starters.  



#9 Sweet'n'low

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 04:42 PM

What quotes did you get from roofing companies? New roof over old? Complete tear off? Patch job? I will assume higher ups are more likely to appeal to a patch job. Patch job work is usually guaranteed for 12 months. In the mean time, without knowing the extent of the leak or leaks there are alternative temporary fixes to return to maximizing your space. Installation of a leak diverter within the building for starters.  

Obtaining quotes is above my pay grade. It is the original roof from when the building was constructed (I'm assuming 60's). Management has been doing patches, but the amount of patchwork completed that I've seen people come in to do the work on, they could have paid for a new roof. I'm not involved in these processes so I don't know much information other than they are telling me to figure out something else while the root cause is widely known. We have been using leak diverters, but its difficult for the warehouse crew to keep playing slalom on forklifts with product on them. The warehouse crew is definitely beyond disgruntled. 



#10 Hoosiersmoker

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Posted 30 July 2019 - 04:52 PM

We're also a food packaging manufacturer. Here's what we've used in the past between roof repair / replacement. https://www.mcmaster...-drainage-tarps . We use off the shelf hose and divert into plastic 55 gallon drums and Maintenance  checks / empties them weekly. Auditors see them, ask about them and move on. We keep 6 or 8 of different sizes on hand at all times. You're lucky if you only have 1 or 2 leaks. We have nearly 2 acres of flat roof. We replaced one half and it was over $1,000,000.00. What are the ramifications of a system failure and your certification being pulled? It seems that's what they're facing right now. Do you have a confidant you can partner with to get gently the point across?



#11 Sweet'n'low

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Posted 30 July 2019 - 05:33 PM

We're also a food packaging manufacturer. Here's what we've used in the past between roof repair / replacement. https://www.mcmaster...-drainage-tarps . We use off the shelf hose and divert into plastic 55 gallon drums and Maintenance  checks / empties them weekly. Auditors see them, ask about them and move on. We keep 6 or 8 of different sizes on hand at all times. You're lucky if you only have 1 or 2 leaks. We have nearly 2 acres of flat roof. We replaced one half and it was over $1,000,000.00. What are the ramifications of a system failure and your certification being pulled? It seems that's what they're facing right now. Do you have a confidant you can partner with to get gently the point across?

 

We use the same diversion methods right now. But we have about 10-12 leaks throughout the building where the leaks are occurring. The roof is the original from the 70's, so I think it has definitely done more than its invested time. As for the ramifications, I have no idea on that part. I am not included in bigger picture conversations, if there are any at all. I have no power to buy or quote anything when it comes to necessities like vac pumps for cleaning or quoting for labs to be completed on our product to validate that we are a clean facility. Unfortunately, I dont have a confidant to partner with. The HR manager isn't even taken seriously when inquiries of forklift repairs come up or training purposes for safety work environments. We just had a safety meeting, and we were told "I hope it doesn't take time away from production". That statement gets my blood boiling. 



#12 Hoosiersmoker

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Posted 30 July 2019 - 05:59 PM

Those type of comments are reminiscent of a sinking ship attitude. If the company can't get out of its own way to get things accomplished i doubt it's long for this world.







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