National Forklift Safety Day is sponsored by the Industrial Truck Association (ITA) and is in its 4th year of recognition. With more than one million forklifts at work daily in the United States, it is important now more than ever that the material handling community take steps to secure the safety in workplaces nationwide.
Why is forklift safety so important? Nearly 100 fatalities and almost 35,000 serious forklift-related injuries occur in the USA per year. What’s more, it is estimated that 70% of all forklift-related accidents can be avoided with proper training.
The top three causes of forklift fatalities (as of 2016) are:
• Forklift overturn
• Pedestrians struck by forklift
• Falling from forklift
In addition, forklift-related citations are routinely among OSHA’s top 10 violations each year. A few of these violations in 2016 included:
• Fall protection (#1)
• Lockout/Tagout (#5)
• Powered Industrial Trucks (#6)
Businesses across the nation spend upwards of $170 billion per year on costs related to occupational injuries/illnesses, but companies that implement safety and health management systems can reduce their injury and illness costs by 20-40%.
Eastern Lift Truck Co.’s Safety and Training Departments can help your operations stay OSHA compliant and up to date on training courses. Here are a few tips for safe operation of forklifts and powered industrial trucks in your business:
1. Know the OSHA recognized, ITA classifications of commonly used types of forklifts. This tutorial was created by Eastern Lift Truck Co. for this express purpose.
2. Get trained and know the rules and requirements of safe forklift operation. Explore our Training Department page for more information on our comprehensive offerings.
3. Aim to create a safer work environment by improving visual communications in busy areas. Our Parts Department has many options for safety-related attachments and equipment to help keep your workers safe.
4. Make sure your equipment is up to date on tune-ups, emissions testing, and other important checks (seat belt, hoses, tires, forks, brakes, etc.). If you aren’t sure what you require, our Service Department is here to serve you.
At Eastern Lift Truck Co., we take our and our customers’ safety seriously. This National Forklift Safety Day, make safety a top priority where you work!