Mastering Forklift Safety: Best Practices Guide
Forklifts are one of the most used pieces of equipment across warehouse operations. They carry heavy loads and move them from one place to another, making it much easier and safer to manage loads that are too large or too heavy for manual labor alone. However, forklifts can also be dangerous, which is why investing in forklift safety should be a top priority for all warehouse operations. Our forklift safety guide will provide you with the best safety practices for forklift operations and emphasize the importance of OSHA-certified forklift training. Furthermore, we will discuss how Maybury offers OSHA training for both 10-hour and 30-hour sessions for forklift safety.
1. Conduct Pre-Operational Inspections
Before operating any forklift, a pre-operational inspection should be conducted. The inspection should include checking for any damages, leaks, or issues with the forklift. The operator should ensure that the forklift is operating correctly, including the seatbelts, horns, mirrors, and lights. By conducting the pre-operation inspection, the operator reduces the risk of accidents, ensuring that the forklift is safe to operate.
2. Proper Load Handling Techniques
Forklift operators must receive proper training on how to lift and maneuver loads safely. The lifted load should not exceed the forklift’s capacity, and the load must be balanced correctly to ensure the safety of your workers and warehouse operations. The operator must not raise the load high above the forklift or tilt the mast forward while moving the load. Additionally, the operator must be sure to sound their horn when approaching a blind corner or passing other workers.
3. Maintaining Proper Distances
Operators must maintain the correct stopping distance to prevent accidents. Forklift operators must avoid sudden stops, especially when carrying heavy loads. The operators should keep a safe distance between the forklift and any obstacle. Pedestrian walkways should be properly designated and marked to avoid possible collisions with other workers in the warehouse.
4. Training on OSHA Certified Forklift Certification
To significantly reduce the risk of accidents, any operator handling a forklift should have OSHA-certified training. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration outlines regulations and standard forklift operator training, including classroom instruction, and practical training requirements. At Maybury Material Handling, we offer OSHA 10-Hour or OSHA 30-Hour Forklift Certification Training to prepare operators for safe operation in any workplace. Our courses cover the basics and advanced procedures of forklift operations to ensure safe and OSHA-compliant implementation while reducing the operational cost of businesses.
5. Implement Safety Protocol and Regular Maintenance Checks
Warehouse operators should implement safety protocols to ensure that forklift operations are conducted safely. These safety protocols include load capacity limits, loading dock rules, pedestrian limitations, and forklift speed control. It is equally essential for operators to conduct regular maintenance checks and, if possible, create a reliable inspection team within your workplace. This ensures regular repair and maintenance of the lift truck equipment to prevent accidents from happening.