Main Forklift Safety Concerns and How You Can Avoid Them
If you are working with heavy equipment, chances are you already have an understanding of how dangerous this type of work can be. It becomes exponentially more so, however, when operators do not do not take the proper safety precautions to avoid accidents. For that reason, clearly identifying the types of situations that can be dangerous and understanding these risks is a crucial step in avoiding workplace accidents. At Alberta Lift, our top concern is getting the job done safely. Read on for just how you can do that on your worksite.
1. Hazard: Tipping
A forklift can tip for a variety of reasons, but it is definitely a considerable safety concern that you’ll want to take measures to avoid. To begin, you need to ensure that the forklift is properly loaded. Overloading a lift is setting yourself up for danger. Know how much weight the forklift can handle and ensure that the load is properly distributed before you begin. Your load should be well-stacked, balanced, and securely fastened.
Tipping can also be a result of driving around corners too fast. Always drive within the speed limit and take extra caution when coming around sharp turns or other maneuvers that require attention.
2. Hazard: Crashing
Crashing a forklift is another potential hazard on the work site. Of course, crashes can happen with other machinery, supplies in the warehouse, or other people. All these scenarios can result in serious injuries or death, to the operator or to others on the worksite, as well as significant damage to the machinery and job site.
Luckily, there are several steps operators can take to ensure that crashes don’t happen. Firstly, it’s important to always drive within the speed limit and maintain proper visibility. This can be done, in part, by wearing the proper eye gear, so that your eyes are protected but that you can still see clearly.
Communication is another important element you need to consider to effectively avoid crashes. Additionally, it is worthwhile to evaluate the work site environment for elements that increase risk, such as narrow or cluttered aisles and potential obstructions at doors and intersections.
3. Hazard: Racking Failure
This particular type of accident often leads to videos that quickly spread on the internet, for their spectacular quality. A racking failure can be a destructive and costly accident that causes a “domino effect,” knocking down an entire warehouse. A racking failure results from a few things, namely setting a load onto a high rack that then causes it to topple off.
4. Hazard: Toppling
Uneven surfaces are a big safety hazard in the work regardless, regardless of how careful a driver may be. Factors such as potholes, slippery, or uneven surfaces should be taken into account and avoided whenever possible. Toppling can also be caused by driving on steep slopes. Remember to never back a forklift up an incline.
While safety is a driver’s responsibility, there are also environmental factors that have a big impact on the overall safety of a work site. By checking these factors and making changes to dangerous conditions, you can set up your drivers for safety success.
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