Monthly Archives: May 2013

How To Safely Use a Forklift

   Anyone operating a forklift has to practice high levels of safety. In Los Angeles, Ca it is required by OSHA that drivers have a current forklift certification in Los Angeles. An operator must first be properly trained before checking the safety of a forklift. Even though there are various kinds of forklifts available, checking them usually involves the same procedures. You can ensure that your forklift is safe by doing the following things:

1. Check the machines safety equipment

This is largely a standard process for most of the forklifts available.
-Check the seat belts and operator restrains: Most forklifts have a similar belt restraint. However, the skid steer lift is a bit different. It has a special bar that goes around the operator’s torso.
-Check the bell or alarm: They will alert the person working in your immediate surrounding that that you are putting the machine in reverse.
-Check the fire extinguisher: It should be 10 pounds minimum, ABC rated, with full charge and be placed in an easy to reach location.
-The mirrors on the forklift have to be mounted in a way that allows the operator to watch the areas behind him from his seat.

2. Check the engine oil, coolant and transmission before you operate the forklift. If you fail to do any of these things, you might cause the forklift to stop working and this will place in a precarious situation.

3. Look for any leaks that could be around the forklift. You should also lift the wheel hubs, lift cylinders, valve spools and hydraulic fittings and check for any more leaks.

4. The hydraulic lines should be checked for any possible wear. Any crushed steel fittings or reinforcing wires that are left exposed could be an indication that there is a major failure with hydraulic system.

5. If the machine happens to have rollers and lift chains, make sure that you carefully inspect them. If they have any damaged links, your load could fall off the machine. Rollers that are worn out or out-of-round tend to bind. This causes the rails to fall of their tracks.

6. It is important that you also inspect tires and look for signs of wear and tear. The tires have to be properly inflated and there should be no damages on their treads or sidewalls. If a sudden blow-out occurs, it may cause the machine to overturn. Not only will the operator be exposed to danger, such a situation could also lead to serious injury or death for the people around.

7. Ensure all the brakes are fine and working the way they are supposed to. If you happen to be carrying heavy materials and the machine fails to stop, someone will most likely get hurt.

8. You should maintain a clean environment around the operator’s area. Using the controls might be difficult if there is any debris jamming restricting access to them.

9. In addition, look at your working area and ask the following questions:

-Will the ground manage to support the equipment?
-Is the ground your working on level enough to facilitate safe travel?
-Are there any obstructions present that may cause tire failure?
-Do you have the required clearance from the power lines directly above?

Once you have adequately answered these questions and everything things to be okay, you can then begin to operate the forklift.