National Forklift Safety Day is June 14
In 2014, the Industrial Truck Association founded National Forklift Safety Day to highlight the safe use of forklifts. An additional motivation was to serve as an annual reminder of the value of training and equipment checks in every industry that relies on forklifts. Forklifts are an essential piece of equipment in many workplaces. For example, warehousing and manufacturing depend on forklifts. These vehicles make work more efficient. However, they can also pose serious hazards to those operating or working near them. With this in mind, we can prevent forklift hazards. Properly trained workers that follow safe practices are the best prevention.
Steps that protect workers on forklifts
- Always wear seatbelts when operating a forklift.
- Never exceed the rated load, and ensure loads are balanced.
- Make sure you have enough clearance when raising and loading materials.
- Watch for pedestrians and observe speed limits.
- Keep a safe distance from the platform and ramp edges.
OSHA’s Powered Industrial Trucks – Forklifts page provides additional ideas for keeping workers safe. Every year, forklift accidents result in an average of 85 deaths and 34,900 serious injuries. Therefore, training is vital in reducing the number of injuries and deaths. All employers have an important role in the safety of their employees.
Some additional safety measures for operating forklifts
- Dress For Safety
- Know Your Forklift
- Conduct Daily Forklift Safety Checks
- Never Operate a Damaged Forklift
- Only Work in Well-Lit Locations
- Never Touch The Mast During Forklift Operations
- Refuel with Caution
- Never Stand Beneath a Forklift Load
OSHA provides specific safety rules for operating forklifts. Therefore, employers are expected to conduct training for all employees working forklifts. Then operators must pass a test and recertify at least once every three years. Finally, ongoing supervision is essential to ensure forklift safety rules are enforced so that employees are kept safe.