Forklift safety at workplace are very important at workplace. In Malaysia, Every year an accident involving a forklift can causes fatality. Forklifts are incredibly useful pieces of equipment, used throughout many industries to enhance productivity, speed up processes and protect the health and safety of workers. But they can also be extremely dangerous, with thousands of forklift accidents every year resulting in sometimes serious injuries, and usually caused by improper and unsafe operation or lack of training for the operatives.
Below are a few tips that will help you keep your workplace safe and ensure you get the most from your equipment and staff.
1. Train your workers
This is not just a sensible choice, but a legal obligation. Forklift Safety Training are very important. As an employer you must ensure that your team are given all the training they need to safely and legally operate a forklift and keep themselves, their workmates and visitors to your site safe and protected from harm.
2. Provide proper Personal Protective equipment
Your operators should have access to personal protective equipment for forklift safety.
Safety helmet - a must for any construction environment, development or warehousing facility
Safety shoes – can be the most simple way to avoid potentially disabling accidents
Safety vest – essential for everyone present on site – not just the operatives
Tight fitting clothing – loose clothing, sleeves or trouser legs, can easily become trapped in machinery
3. Regular Forklift Safety Inspections
During their training, your employees will be taught the importance of pre-use safety checks, and how to properly examine the forklift before it is used – every time. Some of the things to inspect before each use include:
Any problems or faults uncovered, or any signs of excessive wear and tear that become evident, should be reported to the supervisor immediately and mean the vehicle is immediately taken out of action. For Forklift Safety all repairs should be carried out by a fully qualified technician or mechanic.
4. Starting a forklift
As with any vehicle, there are certain things to check before you start the engine that you will not be able to adjust once the vehicle is in motion:
Mirrors should be positioned to give the individual operator a clear view of everything around them
The seat and controls will need adjusting for each operative to ensure they are within easy and safe reach
The operative should be properly and comfortably seated for the journey.
The most important for forklift safety is make sure the seatbelt fastened
5. Be aware of your surroundings
You should always operate your forklift safety in line with any site rules, speed limits and safety guidelines, which in most places involves:
Only driving on designated roads or paths
Keeping below a 10 miles per hour speed limit
Check signs for low ceilings or doorways, give ways, loading bays & exclusion zones
Know where the edges of ramps, bays and docks are, so you can safely avoid them.
6. Know your hazards all time for forklift safety
It’s important that you know the area you will be driving in well, as an unseen bump in the road can cause the vehicle to tip and result in injuries to yourself and others, as well as damage to the vehicle.
Be aware of lumps, bumps, slippery ground and uneven surfaces
Avoid any loose materials, objects or flooring
Slow for corners and doorways, especially if your visibility is limited
Use your horn to warn pedestrians of your approach
Stay a safe distance from other operatives and vehicles
Maintain a safe stopping distance at all times
7. Safe operating procedure for forklift safety
One of the biggest causes of forklift accidents is unsafe loads. Unevenly balanced, unsecured, too heavy or too high loads can cause vehicles to tip up, resulting in accidents that could have been avoided with proper care. The rules are simple:
The load should be tilted slightly back, towards the vehicle
The forks should sit low whilst the vehicle is moving
Loads should be correctly stacked and spread across both forks
Use pallets or skid to balance the load
Check for any overhead obstacles before stacking upwards
Use ropes, straps and bindings to properly secure loads. Do not overload the forklift
Do not push a load with the forks
Never exceed the maximum capacity of your forklift or attachments
Always check the load carefully before moving off
8. Maintain good visibility
Another contributing factor in many accidents and forklift safety is not being able to see the path ahead clearly – this not only represents a danger to the driver, but any pedestrians who may not see the forklift approach. Maintaining a clear view on your journey and load is key to upholding safety.
Position the load so you can see clearly where you are going keeping it as low as possible
If necessary, operate the forklift in reverse
Ensure you can see the load clearly, to check it remains secure
If the weather is bad, and effective your ability to see clearly, stop driving
If necessary, get a lookout to assist you and keep them in yoru sight at all times
Operate the forklift in reverse when it improves visibility; except when moving up ramps.
9. Driving on Ramps
Forklift safety operatives should uphold good working practices at all times, especially when travelling on a on ramp or incline with a loaded forklift.
If you’re travelling uphill, move in a forward direction
If travelling downhill, move in a backward direction
Always look in the direction of travel
Use a look out for additional safety if necessary
Stay away from the edge of the ramp
Do not travel on ramps with no railings
Never turn, change direction or load on a ramp
10. At the end of the shift
Once the task is completed or the operative’s shift ends, the forklift should be returned to the designated area and parked safely in the authorised space.
Forklift Safety at Workplace