OSHA Weighs in On Forklift Safety Awareness

OSHA Weighs in On Forklift Safety Awareness

Forklifts are standard material handling equipment in most warehouses. While forklifts allow greater productivity, they can also increase risk of injury and damage if workers don’t follow safe operating procedures.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) promotes education and training to raise awareness of workplace safety. Here are OSHA’s top tips for operating forklifts safely and efficiently.

Mounting and Dismounting

– Make sure hands are clean and dry to prevent slipping off handholds.

– Don’t use the steering wheel to pull yourself up.

– Check the soles of shoes for grease that may cause your footing to slip.

– Climb in and out carefully and avoid jumping.

Starting and Stopping

– Conduct a visual and operational inspection of the forklift before each use.

– Check the travel path for obstructions.

– Watch out for blind spots and use the horn as needed.

– Don’t park in a spot that blocks the aisle or doorways.

– Always engage the parking brake.

Driving, Steering and Turning

– Drive at a speed that allows for safe stopping.

– Always look in the direction of travel.

– Reduce speed when turning and come to a complete stop before changing directions.

– Make sure forks are lowered before turning or reversing.

– Give pedestrians generous clearance.

– When traveling on an incline, always keep the load upgrade.

Forklift Operators

– Keep arms and legs inside the forklift at all times.

– Never carry passengers on the lift itself.

– Don’t engage in stunt driving or tricks.

– In case of a tipover, hold tight to the steering wheel, brace your feet and lean away from the impact.

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