Forklift operators must go through regular certification and training. Warehouses provide clear pathways and traffic patterns for forklifts on the move. Since the most common forklift accidents involve striking a pedestrian, what responsibility falls on that person to stay safe?
How to Work Safely Around Forklifts
#1 Always Be Aware of Surroundings
Keep your eyes and ears open at all times. Don’t depend on the forklift operator to notice you or hear you. Take care when rounding corners or going behind the forklift. Listen for horns, alarms, or flashing lights that indicate a machine is in motion.
#2 Stay in Designated Areas
There are often designated lanes for forklifts and separate areas for pedestrians. It goes without saying that a pedestrian should always stay in the designated area, often marked by special paint or yellow/black stripes.
If you must venture into an active forklift zone, do so with extreme caution.
#3 Look, Listen, and Slow Down
Just as a driver should look twice before changing lanes, pedestrians should do the same when working around forklifts. Be prepared to stop on a dime. Remember, just because you can’t see or hear the forklift doesn’t mean it’s not there.
#3 Use the Provided Safety Devices
If a warehouse deploys a safety system, such as HIT-NOT, be sure to appropriately wear the personal alarm devices (PAD) and heed the audible and visual alarms. HIT-NOT will warn you when you step into the “Warning Zone” before you even make it near the “Danger Zone” of being too close to moving equipment. HIT-NOT also warns the forklift operator, giving you both time to react appropriately before it’s too late.
There is a lot of personal responsibility when you are working near mobile equipment. Being a pedestrian in the path of a loaded forklift is one of the most dangerous situations. READ The Serious Consequences of Forklift Injuries.
Remember: It’s better to be safe than sorry.
If the HIT-NOT Proximity Alert System is something that could improve safety for the pedestrians on your job site, let SynTech provide a quote.