Forklifts are very handy machines – provided they’re used safely. They’re also very easy to use, provided you have a little foreknowledge about how they work. We look forward to assisting you with your forklift hire. But, before you get into the driver’s seat, take a look at these key safety tips to keep you and others safe during operation.

For Smooth Operation

  • First of all, nobody should operate a forklift without the necessary safety training and certification!
  • Stay as alert and attentive as you would when driving a car. Watch out for any hazards on the floor. Bumping over something on the floor can knock your load off balance and cause it to topple, or cause you to lose control.
  • Always go uphill forwards and downhill in reverse.
  • Forklifts are generally very quiet, so alert people to your approach with a hooter or by shouting.
  • Keep a safe distance from people and objects.
  • Wear your seatbelt.
  • Always wear your safety gear (hi-visibility jacket, footwear and hardhat).

Load Management

  • Most forklift accidents involve improperly secured loads, which fall and crush people around the forklift.
  • Always push the load back against the mast – never balance it near the front of the fork.
  • Never overload the forklift.
  • Before driving the forklift, always ensure that the fork is positioned as far down as possible for increased stability. 
  • Always secure the load before moving the forklift. Strap it in place if necessary.
  • Avoid broken or warped palettes.
  • Try not to let the load obstruct your view. If it does and it is unavoidable, operate the lift in reverse to improve visibility.

Keep Bystanders Safe

  • Be careful and on the lookout for people on foot around your forklift.
  • Move slowly. When driving, stopping, turning or lifting or lowering the fork, never move too suddenly, and always look around in all directions before executing any motion.
  • Never let anyone stand or walk beneath or on the fork at any point.

Provided you are alert and careful, your forklift hire experience should be a safe and easy one. Contact Universal Forklifts for more information.