Everyone has been thinking a lot about safety with the COVID-19 pandemic. We’ve all taken measures to reduce the chances of getting sick and of carrying the disease to someone we love; social distancing, hand washing, wearing masks, avoiding crowds, etc. As your Forklift Safety Trainer, I would like to remind you of the importance of keeping that safety mindset as you return to work.
Now that manufacturing and construction companies are booting back up, forklifts and material handling equipment that sat idle are roaring back to life. It’s great news that forklift operators are returning to the job and resuming the important work of moving products.
After a long break like the NY Pause, it’s possible to forget the things we have learned and experiences we’ve had while operating the heavy equipment. Let’s take a moment and get reacquainted in the safe operation of the equipment.
Idle may need attention before going back in service.
- Check the brakes, forklifts that sit for a long time tend to not stop like they used to.
- Check all the functions for any leaks, again when a lift sits it could develop a leak
Your skills may have gotten a little rusty.
I ask that you stop and think about the things you have learned. Re-educate yourself on the operation and of course, the safety of the equipment you will be using. Before starting your day, practice the turning of the forklift (remember they steer from the rear).
Most of all, wear your seat belt!
As we are told, things will have to go slow on the reopening, it’s like a water valve being turned slowly, and not all at once. Driving your equipment will be no different, start slow until the valve can be turned up, and life will get back to normal.
Businesses will be very busy making up for lost time and lost production. When focusing on the job at hand and trying to get caught up, people may not be thinking about the dangers. Don’t cut corners. Safety is always job one!
Tuesday June 9, 2020 is National Forklift Safety Day.