While forklifts make warehouse work much easier, they can be dangerous, and even fatal, if they are used incorrectly. The operator or bystanders can be seriously injured or killed if the proper forklift safety protocol is not followed. Forklift operators must stay in the cab of the lift at all times, the need to know how much weight the forks can handle, they need to be aware of their surroundings at all times.
It is vital that forklift operators remain in the cab while operating the equipment. Forklift operators who stick their heads out from under the overhead guard run the risk of having something fall on them or hitting their heads against objects outside of the cab. Forklift drivers need to keep their hands and feet in the cab at all times as well. Any protruding limbs could get caught on passing objects and pull the driver out of the cab, leading to dire consequences.
Another important part of forklift safety is knowing how much weight the forks can handle safely. Some people may assume that if the forks can lift the weight, it is safe. This is not true and could lead to serious injury if the weight causes the forklift to lose its balance and topple over. Bystanders could be crushed if the cargo falls off of the forks as well.
Forklift operators need to be aware of their surroundings at all times. They need to be aware of any sudden drop offs, hills, potholes, walls, or anything else in the area. It is vital that forklift operators avoid these obstructions in order to safely transport their cargo. Both bystanders and forklift drivers need to stay out of each other’s ways, as a collision could be catastrophic.
OSHA rules dictate that forklift operators be certified and trained in forklift safety. Operating forklifts correctly and safely can prevent injuries and save lives.
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