Toolbox Talks "Forklift Trucks" - December 3, 2015

Forklift Trucks


1. Review any accidents or "near accidents" from the past week.

2. Describe the hazards of the work as they relate to your project. Explain or show the SAFE way of doing the job.


A forklift can be one of the most dangerous pieces of equipment in the workplace. A medium-sized forklift weighs about the same as the average dump truck and can cause just as much damage. According the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, an average of 100 workers are killed and 20,000 are injured each year due to forklift mishaps. Forklifts can put workers at risk of being caught between equipment and materials, so take these precautions:

* Setup a controlled access zone. Separate forklift traffic and foot traffic where possible, including having workstations, control panels, and equipment away from forklift traffic aisles, or having barriers.

* Do not operate a forklift unless you are trained and authorized to do so.

* Make sure backup and lifting alarms are operational.

* When operating a forklift, drive slowly and watch out for pedestrians and blind intersections.

* Check maintenance records of forklifts on a monthly basis at a minimum.

* Watch where you place your hands and feet. Be aware of and stay clear of pinch points such as the wheels and lift gears.

* Stay under the overhead guard. Keep your hands and feet inside the forklift and wear the seat belt.

* Do not drive up to anyone standing in front of a bench or other fixed object.

* As a pedestrian, always be aware of the presence of forklifts in the area and keep a safe working distance from them at all times. Even at low speeds, an unexpected movement of the forklift can crush a bystander against a fixed structure or another vehicle.

Reminder: 2015 Annual OSHA Partnership Meeting will be held on December 11, 2015.  For more information please contact Kristy Watson via email or phone (208) 344-2531.


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