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Regardless of what business you’re in, change comes quickly. A vendor may introduce a new accessory that enhances a forklift’s safety capabilities. You need to stay on top of changes like this to assure that the forklifts you have in your fleet are using the most up-to-date safety features.
Earlier this year, members of the 2020 Safety Drive Campaign in the UK reviewed a number of key safety concepts that forklift operators may not be aware of. Some of these things appear here.
Enhance Your Forklifts
If the fleet manager is considering the acquisition of a new forklift truck, then he needs to be aware of some new optional features that are available that are expressly designed to enhance safety. Many of the new options can be retrofitted on to existing lifts, making enhancements possible without acquiring new lifts. It is worth fleet managers to explore what is out there.
Two new options for forklift safety you should be aware of are weight, height, and speed limiters.
Weight limiters ensure that forklift operators lift and shift only the proper loads. Height limiters help to prevent collisions with suspended items coming down from the ceiling including pipes and ventilation systems. Speed limiters prevent the operator from driving the forklift too fast. It also helps improve driving standards and fuel efficiency.
Another new option that forklift managers may want to consider adding to their trucks is reverse camera systems. They scan the work area and then alert the forklift driver of possible nearby hazards. A sophisticated version of this accessory automatically brakes the lift to avoid accidents.
Another accessory that is available that you may already be aware of is a spotlight that projects light onto the floor to alert to an approaching vehicle. Other accessories picking up on the same concept include an accessory that projects lines of red light onto the floor around the perimeter of the truck. This also alerts pedestrians of an approaching lift and warns them to keep a safe distance.
These devices are especially useful at blind corners or in situations when the noise levels are high and pedestrians can’t hear an approaching lift.
Accessories like access control keypads with designated codes as well as smart card and tracking devices will assure that people who are not authorized in operating a forklift can’t gain access to the machine.
The 2020 Safety Drive Campaign in the UK also focused on training and it concluded that training should always be priority one.
No matter what features a forklift has, it still has to be driven safely. This can be assured through a course of proper training and refresher training. A forklift operator-training program should also include employees who work alongside the lifts.
Check Site Layouts
A major responsibility for warehouse managers is to analyze the layout of the site. Assessing every area of the site with an eye on making improvements should be a frequent undertaking.
Things that managers can look out for involves making certain that pedestrians are segregated from the forklift work to avoid accidents. It is a good idea to physically separate forklifts and pedestrians with barriers, elevated walkways, or clearly marked footpaths that are a distance away from the forklift working area. Managers should also make certain that forklift work areas are well lit.