Four Safety Tips for Maneuvering Forklifts

Orange forklift parked at construction site outdoors.

As a business owner, you will want to optimize your warehouse space to the fullest. However, you will want to ensure that your employees understand the importance of moving around the warehouse safely. 

Forklifts play a crucial role in effective and efficient warehouse operations; speaking of which, you might want to rent high-quality forklifts in Auckland at Adaptalift and boost the productivity and maneuverability of your warehouse. Nonetheless, when it comes to maneuvering the forklifts safely, here are a few steps that you can take to ensure the safety of your employees. 

However, you can also benefit from these safety tips if you are moving to a new home or opting for home renovation, as you might need to use the forklift. 

Here are the tips:

Inspect Your Forklift Daily 

Forklift safety is absolutely mandatory because if the forklift isn’t operated safely, it can cause serious injuries – even death. Mostly, the accidents are caused by the failure to follow simple safety rules. The first rule is to inspect your forklift before use every day. You will want to be thorough with the inspection. The inspection of the forklift should be conducted daily, ideally before beginning each shift. 

Potential needs for repair and the detection of defects can indicate when and how the forklift needs to be fixed. Also, you will know whether or not the machine is safe to operate. 

Always Wear a Seatbelt 

While operating the forklift, you must wear a seatbelt. It doesn’t matter the frequency with which you get on and off the forklift during your shift; you must always wear a seatbelt. Nearly 50% of fatalities and injuries in forklift accidents involve an operator being thrown out or jumping out and then getting crushed by the heavy truck. 

In such cases, the driver hasn’t been wearing a seatbelt, which is how they got mouse-trapped between the truck and the ground, causing massive trauma to the head and upper body. 

Beware Pedestrians 

While operating the forklift, you will also want to be aware of the pedestrians.

Often, the people working around the forklift assume that the forklift operator can see them. However, as a forklift operator, you need to know who is in your blind spot, which is why you cannot depend on pedestrians to avoid you. As the operator, you will want to look around and ensure that no one is around while you operate the machine. 

One of the best ways to avoid injuries is to ensure that no one walks close by while you operate the forklift. Suppose you suddenly have to swerve, hit a bump, or an uneven surface – unbeknownst to you – you can hit anyone who is moving in close proximity. 

Imagine the severity of the injuries caused if you were to run into someone with a multi-ton machine. Running into another person on a forklift is always a sure way to kill or severely injure the affected person. 

Slow Down at Intersections 

When passing along intersections, you will want to slow down. The thing about intersections is that you are approaching a blind spot, and you have no idea who or what might be just around the corner. Slightly before passing the intersection, you will want to use your horn to alert the person who might be around the corner. 

Always keep the driving surface smooth and free of debris, spills, and anything else that could potentially cause your forklift to bump, slide, or become unbalanced. At the time of approaching spills and debris, you will want to slow down. Also, while driving a forklift, try to avoid wet surfaces.

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