National Forklift Safety Day: How to Avoid The Most Common Forklift Accidents

A red industrial forklift truck in a warehouse.

National Forklift Safety Day 2021 marks the eighth annual National Forklift Safety Day. This holiday aims to promote safe forklift use. National Forklift Safety Day also emphasizes the importance of proper operator training. However, each year's safety message has a different focus.

There are two topics for National Forklift Safety Day 2021's safety message. These topics include the importance of thorough examination and safe maintenance practices. These items, when practiced, lower operator-related accidents by a large margin.

The most common forklift accidents are almost always operator-related. However, many other forklift hazards also lead to accidents.

Industrial Forklift Truck is here to help you fight forklift hazards. We'll give you a rundown of the most common forklift accidents and how to combat them.

Observe National Forklift Safety Day 2021 by increasing safety at your workplace.

The Most Common Forklift Accidents

To combat the most common forklift accidents, we must know the causes.

So, how many risk categories are there? The Industrial Truck Association, who created National Forklift Safety Day, says three.

You're either facing a user error, work environment, or mechanical design issue. These problems are very serious. However, with proper training, their threat decreases by 70%!

To keep your space as safe as possible, look over these next few points. Then, share them with any operators you know for National Forklift Safety Day!

User Error

Most user error forklift hazards exist because of poor training. In fact, poor training is the leading cause of forklift accidents.

The answer to this issue is good training.

Good training means training more than the operator. Training should include managers, supervisors, and pedestrians. Anyone who comes close to a forklift on a regular basis should be trained to some degree. That means training should be ongoing and fluid.

Whenever your warehouse environment changes, update your training! Your training should reflect anything that could impact the operator. This includes new inventory, changes in floor gradient, or any other forklift hazards.

Per OSHA requirements, operators must be both trained and certified. Evaluate the operator's performance at least once every three years. Once every three years is the minimum, not the standard. Visit this blog for more on OSHA forklift guidelines.

Work Environment

Visibility is a concern for any business that uses forklifts. Clear markings and warning signs create a safe path for workers. When visibility is poor, operators, pedestrians, and other staff are at risk.

For instances when operator visibility is poor, find a "lookout helper".

An extra pair of eyes can prevent some of the most common forklift hazards. Pedestrians often get crushed, struck, or run over in forklift accidents. The answer to this is having a second person to help the operator in blindspots or tight spaces.

In cases with poor visibility and unavailable help, operators should stop driving. Only pick operation back up when visibility is good.

Mechanical Design

If you're operating a forklift, you have to know its limitations. Many issues occur when an operator overestimates vehicle speed and capacity.

Excessive speeding occurs way too often in warehouses. Recommended normal operating speeds exist for a reason. By ignoring this, you're robbing your vehicle of necessary reaction time to danger. Your driver's reaction time is also threatened.

Overall, forklifts are not designed for speed. Forklifts are meant to move heavy objects to a desired location. Always remember this, especially when turning. If operators do not slow down for turns, the chance of tilting and tipping increases.

An industrial forklift truck experiencing one of the most common forklift accidents.

Have a Positive Impact on Forklift Safety

Faulty equipment also contributes to the most common forklift accidents. While proper servicing can offset some accidents, it is not a replacement for quality equipment.

If you're ready for a new forklift, turn to Industrial Forklift Truck. We offer the nation's largest selection of new and used forklifts. Industrial Forklift Truck only partners with industry-leading manufacturers. That means your business will always have access to the best of the best!

Find the equipment you need in two easy steps. First, select your forklift type and specifications. Then, Industrial Forklift Truck will send you free quotes on high-quality equipment. It's that easy.

Honor National Forklift Safety Day 2021 by investing in your business's safety. In the forklift industry, safety means success.

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