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Top 5 OSHA Forklift Safety Violations

Operating a forklift fleet is already an expensive proposition.  Having someone injured or receiving a citation from OSHA only compounds costs. And with the litany of regulations you must adhere to, it’s easy to fall behind and it only takes a few seconds for things to go wrong, sometimes terribly wrong.

MHI has trained thousands of operators and visited hundreds of facilities.  During our facility visits we observe plenty of hazards and violations. Following is our “Top Five” list of most-seen violations or safety hazards:

1. Lifting, lowering and driving with an elevated load – Visit OSHA’s Forklift eTool’s section on Mast Placement to see that their requirements and regulations for movement of the mast.

2. Pre-Shift inspections not being completed – Click HERE to see what OSHA requires and recommends regarding how to inspect and what to do if you find a problem.  Avoid costly injuries, product loss and law suits by knowing and abiding by the regulation.

3. Refresher training not completed every three years – There are more reasons than this one that require refresher training, read them all HERE on OSHA’s eTool.  But this is the one that gets ignored the most, and can be very costly to your company if you get a visit from OSHA.

4. Operating too fast for conditions – While OSHA does not set specific speeds for forklift operation, it does recommend safeĀ speeds for operation.  Read OSHA’s recommendations and requirements on speed and maneuvering HERE.  John has seen plenty of instances where forklifts were being operated at speeds too high for the facilities conditions.  Be sure you have standards in your facility and the operators know them, and abide by them.

5. Not securing trailers or using wheel chocks before entering a semi-trailer – We all operate at light-speeds sometimes and have a lot to get done, but we have all seen the videos on the internet of what happens when a trailer pulls away thinking his trailer is loaded or unloaded.  Know what OSHA says about railroad cars and trailers by clicking HERE.

With the Holiday Season upon us, personnel will grow and many of these new employees will have little or no experience on lift equipment, much less lift equipment at your specific facility and internal department. In order to be certain you are taking the necessary steps to ensure safety for these new hires, be sure to have them trained by a credible source.

We have a wide variety of forklift operator training programs and materials to fit your needs. Whether you train your own operators and simply need quality, reliable supplies; or need your entire workforce trained on a variety of equipment, we can assist you.

We want to see all our customers operate safe and productive facilities.  Have a question about forklift training or OSHA? Or, want to schedule training for your employees? Give your local MHI branch a call.