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For generations, horns have been the primary way forklift operators have warned pedestrians about approaching vehicles. Tooting the forklift horn while approaching intersections, rounding corners, or approaching a group of people has become standard operating procedure for most forklift drivers.
But horns aren’t always effective. They can become lost in the noisy clutter of busy warehouses, docks, or other workplaces. Today, pedestrians are more likely to be distracted by their smartphones than pay attention to the sharp toot of a forklift horn.
That’s why many companies are turning to a brighter, more visible system for warning others of approaching pedestrians.
Light-Based Forklift Safety Systems
Hearing the horn of a forklift is one thing. But suddenly seeing bright lights moving toward you on the ground is enough to get anybody’s attention.
That’s exactly how light-based forklift safety systems work, such as the Forewarner-LED from Keytroller.
Forewarner features red or blue warning lights mounted on the forklift cabin facing both forwards and backward so they can warn pedestrians and other operators of movement of the vehicle in either direction. The forward lights are typically left on continually whenever the ignition of the vehicle is on. The rear lights illuminate only when the vehicle is put into reverse gear.
Combined with the forklift’s existing horn, as well as the loud beeping that many forklifts emit when backing up, the movement of the light on the floor from the vehicle provides a definitive warning to anybody in the area that the forklift is on the move.
Early Warning System
Working near forklifts can be dangerous. Because they are so heavy and can move so quickly, even the most minor collision with a pedestrian can be enough to cause serious injury or even death.
Even near misses can be dangerous. Running over a toe or foot with a solid tire cushion forklift tire can easily crush a foot, possibly resulting in permanent disability.
Colliding with other vehicles can result in significant damage to property and loss of product.
Having double warning systems — sound and light — can decrease the chances of an injury or accident. The Forewarner-LED is also in available with laser lights, as well as side lights.
Light-based forklift safety systems are an affordable way to significantly increase workplace safety anywhere forklifts are used. Unlike horns, lighting systems work automatically, so they don’t depend on the driver to activate them whenever a pedestrian or another vehicle is nearby.