Heavy equipment is important to every construction site and almost every workplace in California. One type of heavy equipment that can cause severe injuries and even death is the forklift. Employees who are not licensed to operate a forklift should never do so. Forklift accidents can easily be avoided and our Los Angeles construction injury lawyer has the following tips for preventing such an accident in today’s post.
Avoid Tip Overs of the Forklift
One of the most important tips to follow when operating a forklift at work is to avoid a tip-over of the equipment. This seems like an obvious statement but so many people tend to operate a forklift without paying attention to the weight of the load, the positioning of the load, and the speed of the equipment.
The operator must keep the load on the forks stable when operating the equipment. The speed should be reduced when the forklift is making a turn and the load should be kept low so that if it does fall it doesn’t fall from too high in the air. You should never put anything on the forklift that surpasses the weight limit.
Be Conscious of Pedestrians
When a forklift is in operation the driver needs to be aware of pedestrians at all times. This includes making yourself aware of the forklift being operated in your vicinity. Pedestrians are all over a warehouse and other workplace facilities, which is why the operator of the forklift needs to be conscious of where they are located at all times. It’s also important for the pedestrians to make themselves visible to the forklift operator and stay away from the forklift while it is being operated.
Utilize Pedestrian Protections
Many warehouses install traffic aisles or islands that separate pedestrians from the industrial traffic of the warehouse. These protections will keep workers safe from forklifts and other heavy equipment that is moving about the warehouse. These protected areas can be built using steel guard rails and gates that are found at railroad crossings. If these protected areas are present in your workplace you should utilize them at all times to avoid being involved in a forklift accident.
The mirrors that are present in the warehouse should be used by pedestrians just as much as the forklift operators. These mirrors make it easier for forklift operators to spot other heavy equipment and pedestrians around corners and blind spots. There’s no reason you cannot use them to your benefit either. Check the mirrors before proceeding in areas where forklifts are known to operate so you can avoid being hit by the equipment.
Take Training Classes
Even if you are not the worker who will be operating the forklift you should still take training classes to understand how the heavy equipment operates. These classes might help you avoid an accident by knowing what to look for in erratic driving, improper loading, and speeding in the warehouse.
Have you been injured in a construction accident involving a forklift or other heavy equipment? Call our knowledgeable and experienced lawyer to review your case. Call the office at 310-997-0904 to schedule a consultation.