Your warehouse is constantly buzzing with activity. Workers are always moving this way and that, with many operating heavy machinery, such as forklifts. While necessary for work in a manufacturing environment, this equipment can do serious damage if not properly utilized.

The last thing you want is for one of your workers be injured (or worse!) on the job. Knowing you could’ve prevented an accident is an awful feeling, and it can be devastating to your company. Learn how to ensure forklifts are used safely at all times in your warehouse.

4 Essentials of Forklift Safety

  1. Frequent Inspections Are a Must

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires forklifts to be inspected on a daily basis. If they’re in use around-the-clock at your company, they must be inspected after each shift. If there’s any indication the machine may have an issue, it should not be used. Catching safety issues early, before they have the chance to become a problem, is a key way to prevent worker injuries.

  1. Forklift Operators Must Be Properly Trained and Certified

You wouldn’t let a worker without a driver’s license operate a vehicle — and the same goes for a forklift. It’s against federal law for anyone under age 18 or without proper training and certification to operate a forklift. Even asking an unqualified person to drive the forklift a few feet is a huge safety violation, so don’t risk it.

  1. Many Safety Hazards Are Avoidable

As the boss, you need to be aware of safety issues that can cause forklift accidents. Driving across the warehouse at an unsafe speed, overloading the forklift and parking it improperly are just a few behaviors that can end in mayhem. It’s your responsibility to put an end to any inappropriate conduct immediately, and make sure workers know irresponsible actions won’t be tolerated.

  1. Machines Must Be Properly Maintained

Machines require regular maintenance to remain safe, so you must have policies and procedures in place to keep them running smoothly. Forklifts in need of maintenance should never be used — even if it slows warehouse operations down. Taking good care of the machine and providing manufacturer-recommended preventative maintenance is essential to keep your forklift safely operable for years to come.

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