How to Avoid Forklift Accidents
Forklift accidents are a serious concern for operators, owners, supervisors and others. If you work in a warehouse and regularly operate a forklift, there’s a pretty good chance you’ve been involved with or witnessed a forklift accident. According to OSHA figures, about 1 in every 10 forklifts will be involved in an accident this year.
How to Prevent Forklift Accidents
There are many different ways to avoid forklift crashes, collisions and other mishaps. We’ll look at the #1 reason at the end of this blog, but for now, let’s look at some things you can do to avoid accidents, injuries and other workplace hazards with forklifts.
Common sense is always a smart policy, and that means following obvious safety rules. Keep your work area well lit. Many accidents are the result of poor lighting. Another way to avoid accidents is to clean up spills and other substances on the floor. Assuming that somebody else will do it often leads to slips and skids. Operator fatigue is a major factor in forklift accidents. Taking a quick break and stepping aside (after properly parking and securing your forklift, of course) can increase alertness and help prevent many preventable accidents. Check your company’s work policy. Especially during heavy overtime, forklift operators and drivers are required to take a break after so many hours worked.
Tips to Avoid Hazards That Can Cause Forklift Accidents
There isn’t just one way to avoid the various hazards in the workplace. To prevent minor mistakes that could lead to major disasters, it’s best to do as many things as possible. Instead of a single method, be as proactive as you can – and that means following OSHA regulations, knowing your company’s safety policies, and just using plain-old common sense.
Here are five ways you and your forklift driving co-workers can enjoy a safer workplace:
Don’t let distractions get in the way. That cell phone call can wait – and even if it is an emergency, stop the lift and talk outside the control cabin. To put it simply: you’re on a forklift, so concentrate!
Take turns slowly. One of the most common ways accidents happen is turning too quickly.
Clean up spills and other obstacles right away. If you see a slick spot or other hazards, immediately tell your safety supervisor or boss.
Keep loads at a safe weight. Similar to fast turns, an overloaded forklift is a dangerous forklift. If you’re moving with too much weight, your lift becomes a menace to you, those around you and also company property.
Wear a seatbelt. Even though you’re not in the car, the old saying is just as true – buckle up! If your forklift suddenly tips or swerves, a seatbelt will keep you from falling out.
Each of these operational and behavioral practices is important for avoiding hazards that can cause accidents, but what is the most effective way to keep the workplace safe? Proper forklift training.
What Does OSHA Have to Say About Forklift Training?
The primary cause behind the majority of forklift accidents is operator error. This means that it was something the operator did, or didn’t do, that led to the accident. If you’re an operator, simply not knowing the right techniques and ways to recognize and avoid hazards could be the difference between you staying safe and getting injured or killed on the job. If you’re an employer, it’s simply not acceptable to have a workplace that isn’t properly trained and certified.
OSHA has set a few strict rules for forklift training that all workplaces must follow. If they catch any forklift operators without their certification cards, the employer of that workplace will most likely get fined up to thousands of dollars. If there are any injuries or fatalities as a result of the lack of training, serious legalities are also a likely possibility.
According to OSHA, it’s an employer’s responsibility to ensure all operators are competent to operate forklifts, following the completion of a training program. They must supply a training course that covers written instruction, practice training, and an evaluation. Training must teach specific truck and workplace-related topics to ensure workers have the most up-to-date information possible.
Choose FLC for Fast and Easy Forklift Training to Prevent Forklift Accidents
ForkliftCertification.com offers complete, affordable training courses to prevent forklift accidents. Beyond the basic common sense safety practices mentioned above, the best method to prevent accidents is proper training. And that’s what we’re all about – giving companies like yours the best possible training with the least possible expense. In only about one hour and from any device with an internet connection, your employees can be trained, certified, and OSHA-compliant to drive forklifts safely.
We teach how to operate a forklift safely, how to perform daily equipment inspections, how to assess the surrounding environment, and how to recognize and avoid hazards. Operators will have all of the information and tools they need to drive forklifts efficiently and safely, while being prepared to prevent accidents.
Inside of our Training Kit, you’ll find:
- Warehouse Forklifts, Classes 1, 4, 5
Electric Motor Rider Trucks, Internal Combustion Engine Trucks with Cushion Tires, Internal Combustion Engine Trucks with Pneumatic Tires
- Pallet Jacks and Order Pickers, Classes 2, 3
Electric Motor Narrow Aisle Trucks, Electric Motor Hand or Hand/Rider Trucks
- Rough Terrain Forklifts, Class 7
Electric and Internal Combustion Engine Trucks
When you purchase initial forklift training to prevent forklift accidents in your workplace, you’ll receive three-year renewals free for life. You’ll also have the option to provide either Spanish or English modules to your employees. And the best part is, you’ll be completely OSHA-compliant and will only need to spend the $299 for the Training Kit once to train your workplace for life.
If you’d like to save more money and time with your own qualified in-house trainers to lead the training, the Train the Trainer course will teach your experienced operators how to deliver the content in the most efficient manner and guide the in-person evaluations to be compliant with OSHA.
If you’d like both the Training Kit and the Train the Trainer course, bundle and save with our discounted Bundle Package.
If you’d like to start a safety program for your forklift fleet, we can get you headed in the right direction. With operators and drivers compliant with the latest OSHA guidelines, your workers will be properly trained to handle any situation – and also prevent those serious accidents from happening in the first place. Our budget-friendly courses can be taken online, and there’s practically no wait for credentials.
To get started on your training program, email us on our contact page or call us at (888) 278-8896. We’re ready to assist your firm in any way possible.