Avoiding Fulfillment Forklift Fiascoes with OSHA Regulations

Forklifts can either speed up the order fulfillment process or drastically impede it. When used correctly, following the OSHA forklift standard, these powered industrial trucks (PITs) are a huge timesaver because they assist in the quick movement and storage of merchandise. But one wrong move from the employee that doesn’t know how to operate a forklift the right way can cause severe harm to product inventory, or even co-workers.

“Each year in the United States, nearly 100 workers are killed and another 20,000 are seriously injured in forklift-related incidents.” – CDC

Knowing how to operate a forklift should be at the top of your list, if you work inside a fulfillment warehouse and handle merchandise on a daily basis. For your own safety, and those around you, it’s vital that you acknowledge, understand and follow OSHA regulations for safe forklift operation.

OSHA Forklift Standard Training: Get Certified, Stay Safe

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, employers need to recognize and authorize that forklift drivers are capable of handling and maneuvering vehicles through successful forklift training and certification. If fulfillment staff are unaware of the OSHA forklift standard and prove to be incompetent at forklift operation, they are putting their fulfillment warehouse at risk of being an unsafe workplace where accidents and injuries can occur.

The forklift, warehouse environment and driver’s behavior are all factors that can affect fulfillment operations and be responsible for deadly incidents and injuries involving forklifts, as reported by CDC case studies.

The OSHA forklift standard states that drivers must be trained, licensed and then frequently evaluated according to their protocols, so that a safe workplace ensues and the performance of forklift operators remains top-notch. J.M. Field Fulfillment understands that compliance with OSHA standards is necessary in order to run a hazard-free fulfillment warehouse. That’s why our staff undergoes forklift training, receives official certification cards and stays up-to-date on OSHA regulations.

Forklift Etiquette: Tips on Meeting OSHA Standards

Driving a forklift isn’t like driving the family SUV. Since they’re built with rear-wheel steering, it’s more difficult to steer and stop. Not just anyone can jump on a forklift and start driving because they aren’t that stable, which is why personnel who plan on operating one need to go through an extensive safety training program. The key to operating a forklift correctly has to do with following the basic rules of the road and staying conscious of your surroundings.

  • Keep a clear path view. Always look out for pedestrians and give them the right of way.
  • Stay seated, use seatbelts and keep arms and legs inside the forklift while in motion.
  • Make your presence known. Honk the horn, use mirrors and flash lights when approaching blind corners.
  • If there’s a truck in front of you, keep back 3 vehicle lengths. Have patience and never pass a forklift traveling in the same direction.
  • Drive at a reasonable speed. If you aren’t careful, your forklift could tip over. Avoid sharp turns and obey speed limits, to stay in control of your vehicle.

The primary cause of deaths concerning forklifts are overturns, representing roughly 25% of all forklift-related fatalities. (Source: CDC)

Observing OSHA: JMF’s Stance on Forklift Safety

 “Safety has always been our number one priority, which is why our team members are required to take a supervised online forklift safety course prior to any forklift operation.” – Ryan Schoeneck, Chief Operating Officer

“We always make sure our forklift operators drive at a speed that allows them to safely and quickly be brought to a stop. They slow down and honk the horn at all crossing lanes within our buildings or whenever they’re moving through blind spots.” – Scott O’Brien, Director of Fulfillment Services

“Our forklifts get inspected on a daily basis prior to being used, so that the vehicles remain in top condition and function properly. We also use extra caution when unloading cargo from trucks, especially when using ramps and entering into carrier’s equipment.” – David Crowell, Senior Manager of Fulfillment Services

Standing by these procedures and running a safe fulfillment warehouse is what we do best. For more information about our fulfillment services and warehouse storage space, give us a call at 844-523-1957 for a quote!

Avoiding Fulfillment Forklift Fiascoes with OSHA Regulations was last modified: October 9th, 2015 by Carmen
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