When it comes to forklift operation safety isn’t optional. Operating a forklift without following certain safety precautions can put the operator and those around them in serious danger. Forklifts are a helpful tool that can speed up productivity in the workplace when used correctly. Maximise the use of your forklift by following these 5 safety tips you should implement before you even start it up and begin using it. If you’re looking for extra protection and safety solutions browse our forklift protection barriers and more.
Before you operate any machinery it’s crucial to always check what sort of licensing you need to have to operate it. Depending on the type of equipment and the environment in which it’s used different rules and regulations may apply. These are in place for your own safety and it’s not worth the physical or financial risk to operate outside of these guidelines.
If you have not had the adequate training you should not be operating forklifts. You need to be trained on how to use the equipment as well as how to navigate it in your particular setting. If you do not feel 100% confident in operating a vehicle speak up. You, and everyone around you are always better safe than sorry. Training should also be routinely refreshed. Ensuring you’re always sticking to best practice and are up to date on rules will make for the most safe and productive operations.
Personal protective equipment (PPE) is crucial when operating machinery like forklifts. Your own safety is your responsibility when operating a forklift so you need to make sure you aren’t missing any key pieces of PPE. Safety glasses ensure that your vision should not be compromised when working. If you work outside this is especially important to keep any dust dirt or debris from obstructing your view. Next you need to ensure you’re protecting your hands. Protective gloves help control your grip on the steering wheel of the vehicle. Next you need to look after your feet. Steel cap work boots ensure no heavy loads will injure your feet. Most importantly anything you’re wearing while operating this type of machinery needs to be of the highest visibility.
Now that you have protected yourself you need to ensure the environment in which you’re operating the vehicle is protected. It’s outlined that to avoid accidents between forklifts and surrounding pedestrians a three metre gap is to be kept between them at all times. To keep both parties safe, safety bollards, barriers, and gates should be installed in the workplace.
With any workplace equipment or machinery there will always be a certain set of procedures in place regarding how it should be used. It’s important to closely follow these procedures when using high risk machinery. Before starting the vehicle check over it to ensure there is no damage. Check your load is secured safely and securely. It’s also important to ensure the machine is not overloaded and whatever you are transporting is evenly distributed. Once you have checked all your own personal safety equipment as well as the safety of the environment and pedestrians around you can begin. Ensure you follow workplace procedure in the way and order you start up the vehicle. It’s also extremely important to always stick to speed, visibility, and path guidelines to minimise hazards.