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5 tips for operating a forklift safely

The forklift is one of the most useful pieces of equipment used in industry. If you use a forklift at your job today, you are fortunate because forklifts are currently much safer than they were in the past.

Nevertheless, there are inherent risks associated with forklifts. EHS Today describes what you can do to stay safe while operating them.

1. Use safety equipment

When you are operating a forklift, you should wear a seatbelt if the forklift is designed to allow you to sit down. Any time you are working around a forklift, you should wear high-visibility clothing, a hard hat and protective footwear.

2. Perform a routine check

Before operating a forklift, perform a routine check of the equipment. If you notice any damage or see any problems, notify the management.

3. Maintain a safe speed

When you are turning corners in a forklift, you should slow down to prevent tipping over. Otherwise, you should obey posted speed limits at all times.

4. Be aware of the forklift’s weight capacity

A forklift has a maximum weight that it is able to lift. Familiarize yourself with this limit and do not try to lift a load that is too heavy. Otherwise, the forklift could tip over.

5. Park the forklift safely

If you do not park the forklift safely, it could result in unintended movement. When finished operating the forklift, lower the forks, set the controls to neutral and set the parking brake.

Do not operate a forklift unless you meet the age requirement and have undergone the necessary training. Talk to your employer if you have concerns about co-workers operating forklifts unsafely.

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