Forklifts are an integral part of many industrial workplaces. However, these machines can be incredibly dangerous if they’re used improperly or without proper training. This is why it’s so important to follow safety guidelines and make sure your employees know how to operate forklifts safely.
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Occupational safety and health officials at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) estimate that between 35,000 and 62,000 injuries occur each year due to accidents involving forklifts. These types of accidents can lead to severe and life-threatening injuries to the victims involved, as well as costly medical bills.
The majority of forklift-related accidents happen because the operators don’t have the right knowledge and experience to handle the equipment. OSHA recommends that all forklift drivers receive proper education and certification before they can begin operating the machine.
Operator inattention is another common cause of forklift accidents. It’s easy to be distracted when you’re driving a forklift, especially when there are other tasks you need to complete on your shift. A lack of attention can cause you to be unable to see what’s going on around you, which can result in you crashing into products, pedestrians, and other vehicles.
When you’re driving a forklift, be careful of your sides and rear blind spots. This can help you avoid collisions with other equipment and infrastructure in your area. It’s also helpful to have a coworker act as a spotter when you’re working with a load that is too tall for you to see over.
Forklifts should be inspected regularly to prevent any potential damage or breakdowns that could cause the forks to fall off or malfunction. A routine inspection can prevent equipment failure that could result in a forklift accident and injuries to the workers involved.
Incorrectly secured loads are a common cause of forklift accidents, as they can easily come off the lift truck and injure or kill bystanders. Several things can contribute to this problem, including poor visibility and imbalanced loads that are placed on shelves or racks.
Unsafe reversing is also a contributing factor to these accidents. Reversing a forklift can cause the operator to lose control of the vehicle, which can lead to it tipping over. A good rule of thumb is to never reverse a forklift with a heavy load.
A forklift driver must always wear a seat belt when operating a lift truck. This is a requirement by OSHA, and it can be the difference between life and death in a forklift accident.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) estimates that 85 forklift fatalities take place each year, with 34,900 serious injuries. These incidents can be very costly for your company and your employees, so it’s essential that you make safety a priority in your workplace.
Almost 80 percent of all forklift accidents involve pedestrians who are walking or standing in front of a forklift. These pedestrians may have been inattentive or distracted and didn’t realize that they were walking near an active forklift.
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