Safety Alert - 6 way to prevent forklift accidents

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Power industrial vehicles can lead to serious workplace accidents that can result in equipment and property damage, serious injury or even death.  In the 10 years spanning 2003 to 2012, 50 workers have died falling from injuries involving forklifts (Safe Work Australia). While forklifts serve a great purpose of easily moving materials and equipment throughout a facility, they pose a wide variety of hazards including falling loads, pedestrian accidents, driving off of loading docks, falls between docks and unsecured trailers, struck-by incidents and falls from an elevation. It’s important to ensure that each forklift operator has been trained and is considered competent.  Pedestrian workers present in areas with forklift traffic should also be familiar with working safety around these vehicles.

Do you have similar safety risks in your workplace?

  • Does your business utilize forklifts to move materials?
  • Have your forklift operators received formal training?
  • Are daily inspections performed on your forklifts?

How to prevent forklift accidents in the workplace

  • Have all forklift operators completed a formal forklift training that includes both classroom instruction and a road-test.
  • Ensure that operators are familiar with all site specific hazards.
  • Ensure that pedestrians are familiar with working safely around forklifts.
  • Complete regular inspections of forklift trucks.
  • Determine the course of action when a forklift is found to be in need of repair.
  • Correct unsafe driving that is observed.  Retrain employees as necessary.
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