Fasten Your Forklift Seat belt!
Did you know that forklifts don’t have seat belts to protect drivers from collisions? Forklifts have seatbelts to prevent drivers from jumping off the lift if it tips over. If the driver decides to jump from the lift, he/she could be crushed between the ground and the forklift.
Although Occupational Safety and Health Administration does not have specific requirements for seat belts; it does require employers to protect employees from “serious and recognized hazards,” and recognition of the hazard of the powered industrial truck tip over and the need for a restraint system for certain trucks. The national consensus for forklifts manufactured after 1992 are required to have some form of restraint or seat belt to reduce the risk of a driver being crushed if the forklift overturns. Employers are required to ensure that every forklift operator is using the seat belt or restraint, and if not, the employer could be cited for failure to comply with OSHA, which will include a penalty fee to be paid to OSHA.
The most common type of accidents with forklifts is getting crushed in between the ground and the lift. Statistics show that there’s an average of 100 accidents a year of people working on forklifts – over half are overturned accidents; yet trying to convince operators to wear their seat belts is easier said than done! The safest place to be on the lift in the event of an accident is in the seat with the seat belt on.
Wearing a seat belt while operating a forklift can maximize safety and keep you from getting hurt!