June 8, 2021 – National Forklift Safety Day (nfsd)
Bureau of Labor Statistics data shows that forklifts were the source of 79 work-related deaths and 8,140 non-fatal injuries involving days away from work in 2019. Forklift Safety should be a priority in the workplace and on the job site. Now in its eighth year, NFSD continues to serve as an opportunity for forklift manufacturers and the industry to highlight the safe use of forklifts, the value of operator training, and the need for daily equipment checks.
OSHA’s Powered Industrial Trucks Standard (1910.178) was the agency’s seventh most cited standard during fiscal year 2020. The standard covers the design, maintenance and operation of powered industrial trucks, including forklifts and motorized hand trucks. It also covers operator training requirements.
Top 5 sections cited:
- Safe Operation – 492 violations
- Refresher training and evaluation – 245
- The employer shall certify that each operator has been training and evaluated as required by the standard – 229
- If at any time a PIT is found to be in need of repair, defector or in any way unsafe, the truck shall be taken out of service – 151
- PIT shall be examined before being placed in services – 133
The standard requires training programs to include components of formal instruction, practical training, and a workplace performance evaluation.
Also, before the start of each shift, operators should perform a visual and operational check the vehicle’s seat belts, tires, lights, horn, brakes, backup alarms, fluid levels, and moving and load-supporting forklift parts.
Forklift Safe Operations
- Always operate the vehicle according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Always wear a seatbelt when the forklift has one.
- Never exceed the rated load and ensure it is stable and balanced.
- Do not raise or lower the load while traveling.
- Keep a safe distance from platform and ramp edges.
- Be aware of other vehicles in the work area.
- Have clear visibility of the work area and ensure you have enough clearance when raising, loading, and operating a forklift.
- Use proper footing and the handhold, if available, when entering the lift.
- Use horns at cross aisles and obstructed areas.
- Watch for pedestrians and observe the speed limit.
- Do not give rides or use the forks to lift people.
For a printable OSHA Quick Card click here.
For more information or assistance on completing your forklift training and certification program, please call 763-417-9599 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Submitted by Melissa A Olheiser, OECS