Why Daily Forklift Inspections Improve Your Bottom Line

We’ve addressed proper inspection techniques in this Feature Article some time ago. We even have Inspection Form free to download HERE, copy and use/distribute as needed, to help you perform complete inspections. We even have a VIDEO to help you train your drivers visual how to inspect a forklift before each shift. Beyond the obvious employee safety aspects of having operators thoroughly, what other benefits does your business gain?

Fewer accidents means less down time. Down time equals reduced productivity, which reduces your effectiveness, increases your costs and impacts your bottom line.

Less damage to product, equipment and facility. Forklifts and lift equipment are kept in better working order, less product has to be returned, repaired or tossed out, and your facility needs fewer repairs. All of this equals a healthier bottom line.

Lower worker’s comp and general insurance costs. A business with fewer accidents will generally pay less insurance costs, and certainly lower worker’s comp. insurance.

Improved productivity. Operators that understand how the equipment works, doesn’t work and knows your facilities strengths and weaknesses are more productive employees. Improved productivity equals an improved bottom line.

Increased useful life of your lift equipment. This is a great benefit often overlooked. Just like your car or anything else you own, if you take better care of it, it will last longer and have greater value when you trade it in. Daily inspections and catching small items before they blossom into giant repair headaches increases the useful life and value of your forklifts.

But this is all predicated on an effective and ongoing training program. Having a partner that’s dedicated to training and has experience training forklift operators is the key to an effective program. Visit our Forklift Safety Training Webpage. Contact Us for more information or to speak with someone, just give us a call at 888-393-9833.


Would Your Forklift Operator Training Hold Up in Court?

We know that forklift operator training is required by OSHA. While your training may meet OSHA’s requirements, you need to look further to determine if your training is adequate for your operation and would your training hold up in court under the scrutiny of a civil court case.

This article, written by an attorney for Lift and Access Magazine, highlights what trial attorneys will target and the kinds of questions he and his clients have faced in a civil trial. While this article focuses mainly on Aerial Work Platforms, our clients with forklifts face the same exposure if their training doesn’t do more than meet OSHA standards. This article addresses a few particular questions faced in a civil trail where damages are being sought:

  • How long did your training take, and what materials were used?
  • What was the content of the practical exam and could anyone fail?
  • What equipment was used?

With the myriad of different types of forklift equipment our customer use, we must also ask?

  • Are all of your operators trained to use ALL of the different equipment types in your facility?
  • Did you provide facility-specific training for your operators to address all the potential dangers in your facility?
  • Do you have a system to identify when refresher training is needed and is it being followed?
  • Is your program ongoing, or was training a one-time occurrence, and certificates issued?
  • Who performed your training and was the source experienced and credible?

The goal of your training should be not to meet OSHA standards, but to ensure that each of your employees that operates lift equipment, can do so safely and the effort is placed on bringing everyone back to work tomorrow safely.


Four Decades of OSHA; See the Results

History has taught us that quality, safety and productivity result from the setting of and adherence to high standards. Although OSHA has at times, been a much-maligned agency, the results on workplace safety speak for themselves. Their setting of high standards for workplace safety has resulted in a dramatic drop in worker injury and death. Their agency has also made a tremendous effort to not only create and enforce high standards of safety, but also to provide education and information to actually help companies in their efforts to create a safe and productive workplace. Below are the results.

  • In 1913 there were a recorded 23,000 industrial deaths among 38 million US workers (source: Bureau of Labor and Statistics)
  • Between 1935 and 1960 there were over 400,000 workers killed in industrial related accidents in the US.
  • In the 1960’s there was a 20% increase in reported workplace accidents.
  • Although the workplace doubled in size between 1970 and 2009, worker deaths DECREASED from over 14,000 to about 4,400.
  • Reported workplace injuries and illnesses decreased from 10.9 incidents per 100 workers in 1972 to less than 4 incidents per 100 workers in 2010

Much of the ground that has been made in workplace safety is a result of creation and enforcement of strict workplace safety. These standards are enforced through a consistent measure of inspections. Many standards called for requirements of employers to provide a wide variety of PPE’s (Personal Protective Equipment) not previously required by employers.

While there have been times that OSHA and it’s many regulations have seemed like a burden, and indeed they can be. No one can discredit the results. One of the most important tasks we take on as employers is the duty to bring all of our employees back safely to work, tomorrow.

Keep Your Cool This Summer with OSHA’s Heat Safety Tool App

When you’re working in the heat, safety comes first. With the OSHA Heat Safety Tool, you have vital safety information available whenever and wherever you need it – right on your mobile phone.

The App allows workers and supervisors to calculate the heat index for their worksite, and, based on the heat index, displays a risk level to outdoor workers. Then, with a simple “click,” you can get reminders about the protective measures that should be taken at that risk level to protect workers from heat-related illness-reminders about drinking enough fluids, scheduling rest breaks, planning for and knowing what to do in an emergency, adjusting work operations, gradually building up the workload for new workers, training on heat illness signs and symptoms, and monitoring each other for signs and symptoms of heat-related illness. Visit OSHA to learn more and download the app for your Android, iPhone or iPad.