There are somewhere between 20,000 to 35,000 forklift accidents every year. It’s important to take the necessary safety precautions when operating heavy machinery. Operating a forklift is a risky job. There are approximately 85 fatal accidents per year. Most injuries and property damage can be linked to three causes:
• Insufficient or inadequate training
• Failure to follow safe operating procedures
• Lack of enforcement of safety rules
Other issues may include lack of proper tools and attachments used, poorly maintained forklifts, and aging equipment. Injuries commonly occur when:
• Lift trucks are inadvertently driven off loading docks
• Lifts fall between docks and an unsecured trailer
• They are struck by a lift truck
• They fall while on elevated pallets and tines
OSHA requires employers to develop and implement training programs based on the general principles of safe truck operation, the type of vehicle being used , the hazards of the workplace created by the use of the vehicle, and the general safety requirements of the OSHA standard.
Employers must certify that each operator has received the training and evaluate each operator at least once every 3 years. Before operating the truck in the workplace, the employer must evaluate the operator’s performance and determine if the operator is competent to operate a powered industrial truck safely. Refresher training is needed whenever an operator demonstrates a deficiency in the safe operation of the truck.
If you have been injured in a forklift accident on the job, call Fine, Olin & Anderman today for a free case evaluation.
Get more forklift safety tips here.