Lift Truck Safety: Not To Be Taken Lightly

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Lift Truck Safety: Not To Be Taken Lightly

Forklifts are known for being powerful and strong – because of their capabilities, many people find them intriguing. Even people who have been driving them for years manage to find a little bit of pleasure in taking one for a spin around the warehouse. We can find forklifts being used in popular video games and we see them on TV getting into all sorts of hijinks. However, it’s important to remember that lift trucks can be very dangerous if used improperly. Hundreds of Canadians find out every year that forklifts are not designed for joy rides and cruising. Instead, they are meant to be used in controlled, safe environments exclusively for lifting approved cargo.  Let’s take a look at some of the consequences of improper forklift training, and what you can do to avoid them.

Many people fail to realize the danger of a forklift being used improperly until it is too late. According to the Occupational Health and Safety Council of Ontario, over 10,300 forklift-related accidents that resulted in lost-time injuries occurred between 1996 and 2008. Between 2003 and 2007, nearly 304,000 workdays were lost due to injuries caused in forklift accidents. In this same time period, 13 preventable deaths occurred throughout Ontario. As you can see, not only is safe forklift operation good for business, it can also save lives!

Forklift operation is not that simple. It’s important that forklift operators have an understanding of the workload and height limits of the forklifts they operate. Thorough training is required for each driver before they step into the operator compartment. Forklift drivers should develop key habits, such as closely monitoring cargo when the forklift is in motion, as well as always being aware of their surroundings.  This will help to avoid damage to the forklift, minimize lost inventory, and eliminate injuries altogether.

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