Forklifts are one of the most necessary equipment in any construction site, but they are also one of the most hazardous. According to OSHA, there are over a million cases of forklift accidents each year, but most of them are avoidable with proper forklift safety training. The National Safety Council states that employers have to pay an average of $48,000 or slightly more in compensation claims related to forklift injuries.
Here are some common accidents and how you may avoid them.
Crushing a Passerby
In almost 20% of forklift accidents, the victim is either struck or crushed by a forklift truck. This mostly happens when the forklift and the workers work in the same pathway that the pedestrians use. The best way to avoid these accidents is to create separate walkways and put barriers in places so that the pedestrians cannot enter the perimeters of the construction site after a certain point. In very narrow spaces, where setting up additional barriers is not an option, brightly painted signs can be drawn in the ground with clear signs asking pedestrians to maintain a safe distance.
Forklift trucks carry immense loads, but they are prone to overturning in speeding or while driving on undulating terrain. The truck might also overturn while climbing an incline or skid on wet surfaces. Forklift drivers should be adequately trained to avoid these accidents. It is not just about knowing how to drive. The driver needs to have a clear idea about incline angles, weight distribution, and maintaining balance and speed equations when driving heavy loads on raised surfaces.
Forklift collisions are more common than one would think. This usually happens if the forklift is made to operate in cramped spaces with other equipment around. Raising and lowering loads can strike a rack or cause a part of the construction site to collapse. Reversing a forklift in tight spaces has additional risks, especially during dock separation. The landing gear might collapse, or the trailer shifts at the nose and hits something close by. It is crucial to conduct 360 degrees visual check before entering and leaving with a forklift. An additional workforce is often needed to remove distractions from the pathways or to monitor blank spots. Steel barriers can be installed in front of the racks to prevent the forklift from hitting them.
Opt for Forklift Safety Training from Think Safety Always To Secure Your Workplace
Forklift accidents can endanger the lives of the driver and the workers and bring the entire workplace to a standstill. Our forklift safety and OSHA training can help you secure your workplace by providing standardized safety training for handling and maneuvering forklifts. The interactive session provides inputs on handling various forklifts and their safety protocols in keeping with OSHA guidelines. Contact us today for details on the course and take the first step in making your workplace failsafe. Call 786-683-4141