Watch For These Forklift Hazards In The Workplace

4 February 2015
 Categories: Industrial & Manufacturing, Blog

Are you the owner of a business that uses forklifts to load and unload goods or merchandise? If so, then your company faces serious repercussions if a forklift accident injures someone. To preclude this possibility, you must keep aware of hazardous situations in the workplace that make an accident more likely. This article looks at some of the most common dangers to watch for. 


Pedestrians and forklifts do not mix as a rule. In fact, almost 1 in 5 forklifts accidents involve a pedestrian, such as salesperson or office staffer. If you have employees who often walk on the warehouse floor or loading dock, make certain that they keep a space of at least four feet between themselves and the forklift at all times. If possible, have the employees avoid being in the proximity of running forklifts altogether. 


A freight elevator is very convenient warehouse feature, but it can also pose some safety problems. If the forklift is overloaded, it might tip over and harm a worker. Make certain that all drivers and operators know the load limits for every freight elevator and abide by them. Operators must be trained to drive the forklift onto the elevator as squarely as possible and to check the clearance space in advance. 


When liquids spill on the warehouse or loading dock floor, the chances for an accident increase. A forklift that hits a spill can skid out of control, causing damage to either the vehicle, a worker, or both. Instruct your forklift operators and employees to report any spills they see to a supervisor at once. This gives your warehouse manger time to clean the spill or set out barriers so that forklift drivers can avoid the area. 

Carbon Monoxide

Carbon Monoxide, or CO, is a potential hazard when gas or diesel-powered forklifts are operated indoors. This is particularly true in enclosed or partially enclosed spaces. Running a forklift in cold weather may also increase the threat from CO poisoning. To avoid any potential problems, have your drivers avoid operating their forklifts in areas without proper ventilation. Also, make certain that they don't idle their engines for any extended period of time. 

Making your workplace as free of forklift hazards as possible requires constant vigilance, but it is definitely worth the time and effort involved. Keep an eye out for the dangers listed in this article to improve the safety of your forklift drivers and other employees. For more questions about forklift safety, contact a company like Bugle Forklift Sales & Rentals Ltd.