• April 12, 2024

Are You Overlooking These Hidden Dangers?

Are You Overlooking These Hidden Dangers?

Thanks to forklifts, anyone can now quickly lift and transport heavy items such as pallets of products. They are a necessary element of equipment while moving logistics to a warehouse. These forklift trucks are designed to do this tough job without any trouble. They can lift heavy stuff and carry it from one place to another. This is super useful in places like construction sites and warehouses where there are very narrow aisle trucks and lots of heavy things to move around.

Think Forklifts are Easy? 9 Hidden Dangers That Could Cost You

Unfortunately, incidents involving negligence do occur with heavy machinery, including inadequate training, faulty equipment, and distracted driving that lead to vehicle collisions. For example, during a highway construction project, a flagger directing traffic was run over by a rough terrain forklift operator who did not realize the flagger was behind the forklift (Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), 2018). In order to address these typical human errors that can also lead to Human fatalities, let’s understand cause of these errors. 


Some common factors leading to these accidents are human negligence, environmental uncertainties, mechanical, and problems related to the load. Surprisingly most forklift accidents aren’t caused by mechanical or load problems but due to behavioural factors where the forklift operator "did not see" or "did not know" that someone or something was nearby the forklift.


1. Improper Use: Despite using advanced forklifts, there are still some individuals who will misuse them. These include racing, making abrupt turns, and using the forklift in destructive ways, all of which can result in serious injuries and put other people in danger. 

2. Blind spots: When a forklift is carrying a large, heavy object, the driver's view is obstructed, making it difficult for them to see directly ahead of them. In these situations, the operator should drive the forklift in reverse.

3. Insecure FilesEach forklift has distinctive fittings and a weight restriction. There should be no loose or unstable parts on the load; Anything loose could fall and cause serious injury to someone.

4. Lack of maintenance: A forklift need maintenance just like any other piece of machinery. Forklift risk exists in the absence of maintenance. When in use this equipment might get worn-out forks, faulty lights, broken alarms, or broken chains might pose a major risk. 

5. Refilling fuelSince recharging the forklift involves gas or other chemicals, the place where it is done can be quite dangerous. Both propane and diesel have a high potential for flames and explosions.

6. Speed: Because of the heavy loads, forklifts are capable of causing as much damage  even at medium speeds as a car traveling at fifteen miles per hour. Anyone strolling around may be extremely risky due to the forklift's weight and speed. 

7. Improper ceilingsThings dangling from above or low ceilings can lead to a dangerous situation. It might run into whatever the forklift is carrying, or it might not fit, leading to other issues.

8. Tethers and seatbelts: The tethers or seatbelts that encircle the forklift operator need to be kept in good working order at all times. This can jeopardize the operator's life if they are excessively loose or worn out.

9. Flooring conditions: Uneven floors or other places that have not been fitted correctly may cause damage to the forklift. Wet and slippery surfaces, cluttered with debris could cause problems for the forklift.

Zero Forklift Mishaps: From Blind Spots to Breakdowns, We've Got You Covered.

Here are some safety guidelines you should strictly implement in your warehouse:

  •  Material handling equipment should only be operated by those who have been trained and authorized. These folks have to be extremely cautious and always aware of their surroundings. 
  • Before beginning work, forklifts should be carefully inspected, and any issues should be reported to the shift supervisor. Both downtime and injury can be decreased by communicating about any possible mechanical concerns.
  • Use forklifts at a speed that permits secure halts. An operator must take into account all surface conditions and avoid making abrupt direction changes. 
  • Always make sure they are balanced and stable before moving. It is advisable to maintain a stable centre of gravity by carrying your weight as low as possible and avoid traveling with your forks high above the floor.
  • Smoking should never permit close to the charging station. It is advisable to keep your charging station away from areas where the majority of the team smokes or where there are lights.

Moreover, nowadays smart warehouses are implementing a variety of immersive reality solutions, including as virtual reality training for forklifts and augmented reality, to address these frequent human errors that could result in human fatalities. Virtual reality is an excellent technique for managing heavy machinery. The Warehouse Simulation is taken into consideration in the VR technology design as an initial approach, with more to come in many application sectors.

And to address the mechanical and repair issues you can partners with 13SQFT- your one stop solution for all spaces, infrastructure, automation and technological needs. 13SQFT can assist with forklift maintenance, flooring, and safety equipment. To ensure safety, warehouses should have strict guidelines like trained operators, regular inspections, and proper speed limits. 

Dikshita Jain

Dikshita Jain

International Master In Business




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