8 tips to make your Forklift operations safer

Every 3 or 4 hours, a Indian worker dies in a work accident. And even though it is a frightening number, many entrepreneurs and even the employees themselves persist in not giving due attention to safety and accident prevention, putting the health and very lives of workers at risk.

In the case of forklift operations, the concern with safety and preventive actions must be redoubled.

Among the most common accidents involving forklifts, tipping (which exceeds 20% of accidents) stands out, followed by pedestrians being run over and situations in which the employee is crushed by the equipment.

And based on these statistics, today we bring you 8 tips for you to rethink your company’s operations and share with your team of operators.


As we have seen, forklift overturning represents about 20% of accidents, making it one of the most common.

And one of the reasons for this is that the operator breaks the forklift’s Residual Capacity limits.

As a reminder, Residual Capacity is the nominal capacity that the forklift has to safely and balance lift the load. This capacity changes depending on weight, dimension and lifting height.

Each forklift has a chart with the load weight ratio, load center and also the height you can lift the load. FULLY respecting these limits – including speed, especially when cornering, is essential to avoid tipping over


Routine, the feeling that “an accident will never happen to me” and overconfidence can cause forklift operators to switch work on “autopilot” and no longer worry as they should about safety.

That’s why refresher training is so important. Have an individual qualifications and recycling worksheet on risks and preventive measures for safe operations.

Ideally, each company should have an Annual Training Program and, if possible, add so-called DDS (Security Dialogue).


To increase the level of safety and protect operators and pedestrians, new accessories and technologies have been created and are being widely incorporated by companies. And an example of this are the light signals, the main ones being:

BLUE SPOT: Indispensable for safety in operations, the Blue Spot anti-collision beacon acts as an alert for pedestrians and vehicles through an LED light source projected on the ground, in front of the direction of travel of the equipment. Some features of this accessory are: it protects operators and pedestrians; can be used in conjunction with existing sound devices or strobe lights; is perfect at low visibility intersections and intersections in cross corridors; this beam of blue light is easy to identify (including the hearing impaired); has low investment when purchased from other systems.
SIDE ALERT SYSTEM: Acts as a warning to pedestrians regarding the safe distance they can approach the forklifts. This System projects a large beam of red light on the floor and allows pedestrians to more safely identify how to travel close to industrial vehicles, in order to eliminate accidents.
RED ZONE: Intense band of red light that clearly signals the possible forklift circuit. The Red Zone emits strong light markings in red, in order to warn and show all employees the safe distance to keep from forklifts.


It may sound like a cliché, but the truth is that keeping preventive maintenance up to date, in addition to being essential to ensure operational efficiency and so that there are no unwanted stops, is also of great importance for safety. And in addition to preventive maintenance, it is recommended that there is a daily checklist to be used before any operation.


The operator needs to be and be trained so that before any movement he has a view of the entire perimeter – the guideline is that he only performs maneuvers when everything is within his range of vision. For Forklift Rental Click here


The risks of a forklift accident decrease in proportion to the preventive measures adopted. And even taking all precautions, operators are still subject to accidents.

That’s why PPE (Safety Equipment) and the seat belt should be part of the operator’s daily routine. AND NO operation should be started – no matter how simple it may be, without him wearing ALL PPE and his seat belt.

It is also important to remember that PPE such as hearing protection ensure that work-related hearing diseases do not occur.


It’s important to remember that it’s not just operators who are at risk: pedestrians too.

That is why it is important to be very careful with the signs of the places where operations will be carried out.

Crosswalks and signage in well-marked areas, as well as warnings at strategic points are essential for safety.


Activities that involve risks have regulatory standards that standardize processes and make compliance with predetermined requirements mandatory. In the case of forklifts, NR11 is the standard that deals with safety for the operation of elevators, cranes, industrial conveyors and conveyor machines (including, in this case, forklifts).

Thus, it is necessary that operators are trained and undergo recycling on NR11. Let’s see some points of this standard.

OPERATORS: as we have already described, operators must receive specific training, given by the company. They must be qualified and can only drive if, during working hours, they carry an identification card, with their name and photograph, in a visible place.
EQUIPMENT: in addition to showing the maximum workload allowed in a visible place, it must have an audible warning signal (horn). NOTE – Although this is not a requirement, companies are implementing in their forklifts, in addition to the sound signal, the light signals highlighted above.

LOCATIONS OF OPERATION: in closed or poorly ventilated environments, the emission of toxic gases must be controlled to avoid concentrations above the permissible limits. In closed and unventilated places, the use of machines powered by internal combustion engines is prohibited, unless they are equipped with suitable neutralizing devices. NOTE – in Europe, electric forklifts are already preferred by companies. Here in India, the market follows the same trend and the use of electric forklifts has been growing rapidly.

STORAGE LOCATION: The stored material must be arranged in such a way as to avoid obstructing doors, fire equipment, emergency exits, etc. In addition to the risk in the event of fire, a possible inspection provides for an assessment for non-compliance with this item. Still on storage, NR11 establishes that the stacked material must be kept away from the side structures of the building at a distance of at least 50 centimeters.


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