One of the most important aspects of using a forklift truck in a busy industrial environment is safety. Forklift trucks are not inherently dangerous but there are some hazards that are associated with them. By following practical health and safety protocols and ensuring that all staff are properly trained, you can seriously minimise the risk of an accident occurring. It’s also worth familiarising yourself with the most common hazards that you are likely to encounter. With that in mind, here are three of the most common hazards associated with forklift truck use.
An untidy warehouse is a nightmare for a forklift truck operator. You should always ensure that the route you are taking in the forklift is clear and free of any obstacles. If not, a collision is highly likely. Obstacles such as pallets, stock or other equipment are common occurrences in busy warehouses and it can be easy to let things pile up. However, by keeping your warehouse in order, you can significantly reduce your chance of having an accident. And being aware of the chance of obstacles will do the same.
A forklift tipping over is more common than you might think. There are two main reasons why your forklift might tip over. One is incorrectly loading your forklift; by either overloading it or making it top heavy. You may be tempted to try and save time by making one trip instead of two, however, by cramming too much on your forklift, you’re creating a hazard. You could cause your forklift truck to tip over or your load may fall.
The other reason is going too fast. Excess speed is incredibly dangerous especially when you’re rounding corners or working outdoors. You’re creating unnecessary hazards for yourself, your equipment and the people around you. Keep it slow and steady!
Improper use of attachments
Using attachments with your forklift truck can increase the productivity of your warehouse, however, using them incorrectly can cause hazards. If you’re going to use a boom, self-dumping hopper or a safe access platform it’s essential you learn how to do it properly. It’s a good idea to undertake training, either on the forklift itself with supervision or you can use a forklift simulator to get to grips with the new attachments. You must also always ensure that the attachment you are using is compatible with your specific forklift truck. If not you could cause an accident.
By being aware of the possible hazards associated with forklift trucks, you can minimise the chance of one actually occurring.