The warehouse forklift operator, Barry, was a veteran driver of 20 years. He’d spent his career driving forklifts and other mobile equipment in a warehouse setting. Barry had an excellent safety record and almost always took the proper safety precautions. He’d even provided forklift certification training for new hires from time to time.
Despite all of this experience and training , Barry’s forklift slid off the side of a loading dock while he was attempting a tight squeeze around loaded pallets. He survived the fall with only minor injuries.
What did he do to stay as safe as possible inside that falling forklift?
How to Stay Safe in a Falling Forklift
For anyone operating a forklift, it’s important to be aware of the potential dangers of using this piece of equipment. In particular, you should know how to protect yourself if your forklift tips or falls.
By following these simple safety tips, you can reduce the risk of injury or death in the event of a mishap.
#1 Wear Your Seatbelt
This is the most basic way to keep safe inside a falling forklift. Forklifts are designed and built to standards that include safety cage for the operator. No measure of good design can overcome not wearing a seatbelt.
#2 Stay Inside the Forklift
The second important rule is to stay inside the forklift. Jumping out during a fall can seriously injure or even kill you.
If you Google injury from a forklift fall, you most definitely will see incident after incident of an operator trying to jump out of a tipping forklift, only for it fall on top of them. Your best chance of safety is to stay in the forklifts driver’s seat.
#3 Brace for Impact
While staying in the driver’s seat, hold on to the steering wheel and brace yourself for impact. You want to try and keep yourself centered inside if at all possible, keeping your arms and legs planted firmly inside the machine. This is the best way to minimize injury.
#4 Wait for Help
Once the forklift has come to a stop, assess the situation carefully before taking further action. If you are trapped inside the forklift, do not try to force your way out. Wait for help to arrive to be freed safely.
If you do get out of the forklift on your own, be careful of any sharp edges or broken glass. Also, be aware of your surroundings if the forklift starts to move again unexpectedly. These are reasons why staying inside and waiting for help is the best thing to do.
In a forklift accident, it is important to stay calm and follow the proper safety procedures. By following these simple tips, you can help keep yourself safe and minimize the risk of injury inside a falling or tipping forklift.
For even more forklift safety options, consider the HIT-NOT Proximity Alert System. When it comes to keeping employees safe, it helps to explore every option.