Forklifts are widely used in industries all over the board. They have become key in manufacturing and facilities all around the world. However, there have been many incidents involving improper use and forklifts can become dangerous for workers.
A forklift can become one of the most dangerous tools in the workplace. Many of the incidents involve poor visibility. Partial studies involve many serious data, but the real-world factors are far more worrisome.
For example, there’s a 90% likelihood of a forklift being involved in a fatal accident! When you include that forklifts cause around 85 deaths, 34,000 major and 61,800 minor injuries a year this is no game.
Taking these numbers into account we should get an understanding of what are the main types of forklift accidents before we can mitigate these.
One of the best points of protection is adequate surveillance, and SharpEagle offers the best equipment to do so.
Forklift accidents have increased over the years, but all of that doesn’t mean this cannot be reversed. You can prevent th ese accidents easily and with more care. Many of the accidents involve human error and a lack of much-needed extra precautions.
The most common type of forklift accident occurs when an operator accidentally hits a pedestrian their co-worker. This one happens when an operator is too distracted and doesn’t pay attention to their surroundings. Also, the driver isn’t always at fault, as sometimes they even don’t have enough space to react!
Accidents like these can be prevented with a few workplace alterations. You should define forklift lanes with floor tapes to make workers aware that the forklift may come through at any point. You should also employ rest times and keep the drivers' attention sharp!
The most common causes of these accidents are not enough attention and a lack of proper warning signs.
Provide more breaks in the day, so that the operators can stay refreshed and alert. Place floor tapes so that pedestrians can be alert even if they don't hear the forklift coming! You should also think about physical barriers for the extra tight spaces.
Forklifts are large machines and aren’t made for sharp and quick turns. If the operator isn’t attentive enough he may cause the forklift to roll over which can become deadly! You should also think about the loads — employ a rule of not taking too much weight at any given time, and make sure that the operator maintains a gravity center.
Operators should always look to even out their load, and avoid driving too fast when loaded. Employ a safe speed limit for your facility and make sure your operators don’t accelerate when approaching corners.
Fast and sharp turns, unbalanced loads, and uneven surfaces are the most common causes of this type of accident.
Maintain an appropriate speed limit in your facility and make sure there’s a slow-down sign on corners. The best thing you can do is to employ rules when it comes to weight capacity and keep loads as low to the ground as possible!
A forklift is here to make your work easier but should be handled with care and safety in mind. Sometimes, during peak season work, employers themselves negate the importance of safety and value speed over anything.
Operators should always use their boundaries and employ safety routines to avoid falling off a forklift and injuring themselves.
Avoiding safety protocols and valuing speed instead of taking some time to think and not make rush decisions are the most common causes of people falling from a forklift.
You can prevent these falls by taking your time and making sure that the operators take theirs too. Using proper equipment and signs is also advisable.
Lifting heavy weights and products to great heights with the forklift can lead to catastrophe! Remember all those videos of things going bust in the warehouse? This is the most common cause of these accidents.
Unbalanced loads and shifts can cause the weight to fall and lead to many fatalities. You should always make sure that the loads are centered nicely and that there’s no tipping when you’re lifting that pallet.
The most common causes for this type of accident are loads not properly loaded on the forklift, or when the lift is bent. You should always mind the speed and do things slowly.
To prevent this kind of accident you should avoid carrying damaged weights and center each load properly. Don’t make any sudden tilts or movements when lifting or loading the goods.
Proper operator training is a must and if you’ve workers operating the forklift without the necessary skills or education, terrible things may happen. It’s essential to carry out education and training of all operators and make sure they know ins and outs of forklift operation.
Employees should never look for an easy way out or skimp on training to save budget or to allow the unskilled operator to drive the vehicle. Training isn’t only good to sharpen skills or save money, it’s essential to save lives as well!
The most common cause for these types of accidents is trying to save money and budget on training, or an overall attitude that training is irrelevant.
You should always make sure that operators are educated and mandate training and education. You should also employ training that facilitates safety, not only driving or operating.
If you’re operating a forklift in a challenging setting, or a construction site, you may be faced with vision impairment. Operating a forklift correctly implies that you’re aware of your surroundings and can see where you drive. Many accidents are caused by poor vision and when the driver has trouble seeing where they’re heading.
These accidents happen when operators don’t slow down in these circumstances or when they drive with lifted forks and the weight is blocking their sight.
The most common cause for blocked sight is when you’re driving with elevated forks and weights, blocking your vision. Also, you should be mindful of blind spots and drive safely around them!
You should always make sure to drive forklifts in spaces where you can see ahead. If that’s not possible, ask a colleague to spot it for you! Keep your forks and weights as low to the ground as possible and try to turn slowly around the blind spots.
Vision is most important when driving and operating forklifts. Here at Sharp Eagle, we know this all too well and allow you to compensate with our cameras for an added pair of eyes!
Some accidents can happen even when you’re operating with all safety procedures. The driver is just a part of the safety equation, the very machine has to be in top condition and proper maintenance should be carried out on a schedule.
Accidents can happen because of a malfunctioning valve or hose, poor breaks, or damaged tires. Almost all causes of mechanical failures are preventable through preventive maintenance and routine inspections!
If there’s a lack of forklift inspection in your facility you should make them a rule and employ checks for breaks, leaks, and tires!
Conduct inspections daily. Every operator should perform a basic routine check before sitting inside a forklift. Regular maintenance and service of equipment are a must, and you should always have a supply of valves and expendable materials.
Aside from being helpful for your operations, these machines are very powerful, and high speeds, faulty brakes, and uneven cargo can make them dangerous.
Here are some things to keep in mind at all times!
Forklifts are considered heavy machinery and are sometimes up to three or more times heavier than your standard car. When these machines malfunction, or tip over and fall a great deal of weight is misplaced.
Forklifts can go pretty fast! Your average forklift can go up to 18 mph and creates huge kinetic energy. When an accident happens this energy dissipates and releases a killing wave. Forklifts can take time to stop, given their weight. Their slow brakes make them difficult to slow down quickly.
Much of the forklift weight is placed in the back to counter the weight that’s being lifted. This safety feature is also the main reason your forklift can tip over!
You should always look to employ proper training and safety protocols, to eliminate possible accidents and fatalities in your facility.
Before renting a forklift, take your time to inspect the thing and ensure you’re familiar with the machine’s advantages and disadvantages.
Only operate a forklift that’s properly maintained and ensure the driver is rested, skilled, and educated! Use forklift seatbelts to prevent you from falling out. Always perform safety inspections, report any damages and employ proper maintenance.
Driver vision is something of great importance when operating a forklift, and if they cannot see you should look to ensure they have someone on board to spot the ride. Having an extra pair of eyes is a must, so we advise a piece of proper surveillance equipment. Here at Sharp Eagle, we’ve helped giants, like SAPIN to ensure safety at all times.
Check our offer of safety cameras that won’t fail you even in the worst of conditions!