8 Most Common Reasons for Forklift Workplace Accidents
Updated: Jan 27
Find out how to prevent these common forklift accidents in your warehouse!
If safety is your priority, you’ll want to find out what the most common forklift accidents are–and get things in place to make sure these don’t happen in your warehouse. Here are the 8 most common forklift accidents at the workplace:
1. Poorly-trained drivers
Forklifts are still large, heavy machines. Thus, operators who do not know what they’re doing pose a risk not only to themselves but to those around them. Ensure that every forklift operator is trained and certified to operate the machine.
2. Unnecessary speeding
Workers may feel pressured to get as much done as possible, which is why some might drive forklifts faster than necessary. A good rule of thumb is to maintain 5 miles per hour or below – you can remind your workers to do this through signs around the warehouse or facility. Speed limits can also be installed on the forklift itself; if you’re interested, contact us and we can help.
3. Dangerously placed loads
While this may seem like common sense, many drivers make this mistake. Keeping the load at a high elevation, having it unbalanced and tipped to one side, or loads that make it difficult to see and harder to control may lead to collisions and other accidents. Ensure your drivers keep loads balanced and 4 inches from the floor.
4. Improper turning
This pairs with the first point. When drivers don’t know how to properly turn the forklifts, like sharp turns around corners or using the rear wheels, this can lead forklifts to tip over – whether they are carrying a heavy load or not. Apart from only employing trained drivers, remind them to slow down before making any turns.
5. Not enough signage
Directly related to the three previous points, many of these accidents can be deterred through proper signage with ample reminders and warnings. Keep your warehouse and facilities sufficiently marked for the benefit of your drivers!
6. Riding anywhere except the seat
This is another thing that may seem like common sense but often go forgotten. Riding anywhere on the forklift apart from the designated seat, especially the forks or the parts meant to balance, is very dangerous and will likely lead to an accident. Monitor your drivers and make sure that they are properly seated – with a seatbelt – before driving.
7. Cluttered workplace
Is your warehouse or facility suitable for forklifts? Here are some things you can do to keep making them safer:
• Keep forklift routes, like doors, intersections, and aisles, free of obstructions and clutter
• Mark forklift areas, like walls and floors, properly marked. Employ floor gradients and ramps if possible
• Maintain a clean loading dock