National Forklift Safety Day

Low angle view of a happy mature male industrial worker driving forklift at workplaceIt’s our favorite time of year because June 11 is National Forklift Safety Day! This is the perfect time of year to go over the importance of forklift safety and review some important tips when it comes to operating a forklift. This is the sixth annual National Forklift Safety Day and this year members of the Industrial Truck Association will gather in Washington, D.C., in order to educate customers, policymakers, and government officials about using forklifts safely and the importance of proper operator training.

The importance of operator training and the safe use of forklifts can not be overstated. Not just anyone is capable of properly operating a forklift. Without training and special care, operating a forklift can turn into a dangerous situation. As National Forklift Safety Day approaches, here are some tips for forklift safety to keep in mind:

1. Be trained.

First and foremost, do not operate a forklift unless you are trained and licensed to do so.

2. Check equipment.

Before you operate a forklift, check it out. Make sure that everything is in working order and nothing needs repair. Look for faults in brakes, steering, warning equipment, and more.

3. Wear appropriate attire.

As with anything, make sure you’re wearing the appropriate clothing and gear to operate a forklift. Wear a safety helmet and safety gear. Don’t operate a forklift with greasy hands.

4. Know your environment.

Understand the rules and regulations of where you’ll be operating your forklift. Abide by all posted signs and warnings. Avoid operating the forklift in poor visibility or uncertain conditions. Understand how much your forklift and its load weighs and avoid areas that cannot support it.

5. Load properly.

Forklifts should be loaded within range and evenly. Know how much your particular forklift can handle and ensure that the load is evenly distributed. Secure your load before even starting the machine. Also, never let people ride on the forklift.

6. Watch for hazards.

This might sound like a no-brainer, but be vigilant about staying safe. Watch for any potential hazards that may be lurking just around the corner or pop up as a result of your forklift operation. Stay away from bumps and uneven terrain. Use your horn when approaching corners or blindspots. Maintain a safe distance from other vehicles and people. Always work with enough space to be able to stop safely.

Following these few tips will ensure that your forklift operating experience is successful and safe. In honor of National Forklift Safety Day, be sure to focus on the safe operation when using your forklift.

About Tom Reddon

Tom has been involved in the forklift industry since 1986. He loves doing research, blogging, and speaking about forklifts. You can contact Tom on his Twitter or Google+ profiles.

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