Forklift Safety procedures: How to make sure no one gets hurt on-site

Posted in News


 march 20202march 20203

Forklifts are extremely heavy vehicles. They’re used to lift, stack and transfer heavy loads in worksites such as warehouses, factories and shipping yards. If you own a business that uses forklifts on site, you know they’re dangerous when they aren’t treated with respect.

march 20202

Forklifts are extremely heavy vehicles. They’re used to lift, stack and transfer heavy loads in worksites such as warehouses, factories and shipping yards. If you own a business that uses forklifts on site, you know they’re dangerous when they aren’t treated with respect. You know they can inflict serious damage upon worksite property and worse, cause injuries or even death. The human and financial cost of forklift-related accidents is immense. But the reality is, many forklift incidents could be avoided if operators followed best-practice forklift safety procedures. Here are some of our top tips to help you improve forklift safety procedures to stop workers getting hurt.

Forklift Safety tip no. 1: Stabilise your forklift loads and use attachments
One of the greatest dangers a worker can face is a falling load. Pedestrian workers are most at risk when they’re trying to help the forklift operator load or unload heavy materials off the forklift. If a load isn’t secured properly, it can slip and fall on the worker. Workers are also at risk when the forklift is being used in ways the manufacturer didn’t intend. When workers use a forklift to lift more than it was designed to, it can cause the forklift to tip over.
Businesses must supply the appropriate attachments for certain kinds of loads. If you can see your workers are unsure of how the attachments work, provide training as soon as possible. Overall, make sure workers never overload forklifts. They need to stabilise loads before moving them and to use the right attachments when required.

Forklift Safety tip no. 2: Designate exclusion zones to keep forklifts away from people
If pedestrians aren’t around forklifts, the likelihood of an accident resulting in injury or death is dramatically decreased. To keep them separated, designate exclusion or safety zones for both forklift operators and pedestrians. Make sure your people are where they should be at all times. To do so, you can use physical barriers including:


• Fences & guardrails
• Bright tape stuck to the floor
• Boom gates and traffic lights.

Another reliable method of keeping pedestrians away from forklifts is to build overhead walkways. You’ll be giving your workers a way to walk over the area where heavy vehicles operate. Finally, make sure your workers comply with the rules and regulations of your workplace at all times.

Forklift Safety tip no. 3: Make sure all forklift drivers use safety belts
In a worst-case scenario where a forklift tips over or collides with a wall, a seatbelt can save the driver from getting injured or killed. The seatbelt will stop the driver from being thrown out of the forklift. If a heavy load happens to fall, the seatbelt will also keep the driver out harm’s way.
Businesses need to ensure forklift operators wear seatbelts at all times. Make it compulsory while operating forklifts. Make it a rule. Ensure compliance by reminding workers with signs placed all around your worksite. Lastly, double check all seatbelts in all forklifts to make sure they’re fitted correctly. In a worst-case scenario, a seatbelt that does its job will save lives. If your forklifts happen to not have any seatbelts, install them as per the forklift manufacturer’s instructions.

Forklift Safety tip no. 4: Separate people from forklifts using pedestrian warning systems
It’s often difficult to separate pedestrians from forklifts and other heavy plant. A lot of situations and sites require pedestrians and heavy vehicles to work in close proximity. Your workers are only human; the risk of injury or death will always be prominent on your worksite. Because of this, you need to protect people from the accidents that may come from poor visibility, blind-spots, fatigue, inattention and non-compliance. One of the best ways to stop a worst-case scenario from eventuating, is to utilise pedestrian safety warning systems as an on-site control.

MLA Holdings Pty Ltd can provide you with safety compliance, monitoring and safety prevention advice. Contact us today and see how we can help keep your employees and business safe. Information from for this article was sourced from www.baysidegroup.com.au

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How to ensure forklift safety in the workplace

Posted in News


 imageedit 4 4782782522feb safety 2020

No matter how experienced your employees, working with forklifts can pose a serious hazard to staff safety. This machinery doesn’t just pose a threat to those operating the machinery, but to pedestrians that are exposed to them in the working environment. Forklifts weigh upwards of 2,000 kilograms, with this number increasing when carrying a load. Their rear counterweights can turn quickly, take time to stop and have several blind spots. All these factors make operating forklifts safely and working around them with care absolutely vital. Here are some tips to improve forklift safety procedures and processes that can mitigate the risk of injury in the workplace.

  


imageedit 4 4782782522No matter how experienced your employees, working with forklifts can pose a serious hazard to staff safety. This machinery doesn’t just pose a threat to those operating the machinery, but to pedestrians that are exposed to them in the working environment. Forklifts weigh upwards of 2,000 kilograms, with this number increasing when carrying a load. Their rear counterweights can turn quickly, take time to stop and have several blind spots. All these factors make operating forklifts safely and working around them with care absolutely vital. Here are some tips to improve forklift safety procedures and processes that can mitigate the risk of injury in the workplace.

Ensure all operators are qualified
It is imperative that everyone who operates a forklift in the workplace possesses an up-to-date licence permitting them to do so. Each state in Australia has its own laws regarding the type of licence required to operate a forklift, so make sure to familiarise yourself with the one which applies to you. It is not sufficient that there is a licensed operator somewhere on the premises. WorkSafe has a zero-tolerance policy on unsafe or illegal operation of forklifts, dramatically increasing the risk of prosecution for those who cause or tolerate non-compliance with health and safety laws.

Stabilise forklift loads and attachments
One of the major causes of forklift injury is improper loading that results in loads fallings from forklifts and crushing operators or other staff. Heavy loads that are not secured correctly are a huge risk to pedestrian staff when attempting to help the forklift operator unload or load goods onto a forklift. Your effective forklift safety strategy should ensure that appropriate attachments are used when loading specific types of goods. Any employees who are unsure of how to use such attachments should be trained to do so before they attempt to operate the machinery. It is also important that employees never attempt to overload a forklift and that all loads be correctly stabilised before moving off.

Set up safety exclusion zones

Pedestrian workers and forklifts don’t mix. For this reason, the two should be separated in the workplace as much as is feasible to minimise the risk of injury and likelihood of accidents. Establishing designated safety exclusion zones for both pedestrians and forklifts should be part of every employers’ forklift safety strategy. There are several ways this can be done, including creating physical barriers such as fences, guardrails, boom gates, and even bright tape stuck to the floor. Another option is to create overhead walkways that keep pedestrians elevated above heavy machinery.

Pedestrian training

Any employee who is exposed to forklifts in the workplace should undertake correct training that makes them aware of the dangers associated with forklifts and how to best manage and mitigate these risks. Ensure that staff are aware that they should only be close to forklifts if absolutely necessary, that they know the forklift blind spots and, if they do assist in loading/unloading, they are taught the safest method to do so. In any situation, an employee should never be forced to work with a forklift if they feel unsafe or unsure.

Complete a checklist
Completing a forklift safety checklist should be part of every operator’s daily routine. Before starting a shift, all operators should check their forklift is in safe working order, ready to be used and capable of completing the tasks required of it. Contact MLA who can provide your business with a forklift safety checklist that meets State based legislative requirements, designed to reduce hazards in the workplace.

Driving a forklift on the road
It is important for an employer to note that if a forklift has to be driven outside the workplace on a public road, it must be registered and have number plates. In addition to holding a current forklift licence, the operator must also hold a current driver’s licence.

MLA Holdings Pty Ltd can provide you with safety compliance and monitoring and safety prevention. Contact us today and see how we can help keep your employees and business safe. Information from for this article was sourced from www.baysidegroup.com.au.

Download pdf here.

Forklift Safety Rules

Posted in News


 jan 2020January 2020

 A simple traffic plan with separate driving and walking routes prevents collisions.  

 

jan 2020

What are the keys to forklift safety?
Safety and health need to be top of mind when it comes to operating a forklift, and it’s vital to make sure your operators are safely utilizing the forklifts in your fleet. The information provided below should be treated as “general” guidance. Always refer to the forklift operator’s manual for specific safe operating instructions.

BEFORE YOU START
Certification. Forklift safety begins with qualified operators. Everyone who drives a forklift needs to be licensed to operate the equipment. Qualified drivers will make better decisions which keeps them, and others, safe.
Dress appropriately. Operating a forklift requires protective gear to maintain driver safety. Make sure all drivers are aware of the requirements, such as protective clothing like hard hats, steel-toed shoes and a safety vest. Always check hands and feet for grease or oil before entering.
Use a checklist. Before beginning a shift, drivers should ensure that equipment is fully functional by running through a pre-shift checklist. A good option is to install the MLA FleetControl forklift fleet management system that allows the checklist to be completed and recorded online.


STARTUP
Use available safety features. When entering a forklift, operators should always make use of the available steps and hand grabs to properly situate themselves. Use the three-point method: grab the assist grip with your left hand, the hip restraint with your right hand and step up into the truck. Once inside the forklift, the operator should ensure all controls are comfortably within reach and make any necessary adjustments to the mirrors, so they have a full range of view before starting the truck. Operators must always use the forklift’s operator seat belt or restraint system.

WHEN YOU’RE UP AND RUNNING

Stay within the compartment. Drivers should always stay inside the operator compartment, and never reach into moving parts of the truck.
Pay attention to surroundings. Operators need to pay close attention to all work site rules and guidelines, and be highly aware of all posted signs, particularly for speed, maximum permitted loads and clearance heights and pay close attention for wet or uneven terrain.

Move cautiously. Drivers should always pay close attention to posted speed limits and obey them. Stopping or changing direction should be done in slow, controlled movements. When traveling, keep the forks in a low position and sound the horn and slow down when approaching pedestrian walkways, intersections, blind corners, door and ramp openings, other vehicles and when backing up.

Manage the load correctly. Operators should ensure that each load is stable and secure, with the load tilted back against the forks before moving. Drivers need to be aware of their forklift’s capacity to ensure that they never overload it, which may tip the truck over or cause the operator to lose control.

Keep others clear of the mast. When the mast is up operators must make certain that no one walks under the mast or stands near the truck.
Refuel and recharge smartly. When a forklift is recharging or refuelling, make sure that the forklift is turned off and in the designated recharging or refuelling location where no open flames or sparks are permitted.
Have a question about forklift safety rules? Please contact MLA on 1300 000 652 or www.mlaholdings.com.au. Information for this article was sourced from www.mcfa.com.

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December 2019 Newsletter

Posted in News

breaking news

Ken's Korner, Looking back over the years, New Managing Director: Matt Saunders, Congratulations Steve Cook on 30 years service, December 2019 issue of the MLA Newsletter:


 

Ken's Korner

MLA is 40 years old this year.

A long time. Yes, but for the owner of our company, Tercia and Company Ltd (and myself) it all started 50 years ago.

For the full article please download the pdf here.

 

Looking back over the years

Ken Rathgen’ long association with Mitsubishi Forklift Trucks started with Brambles Limited almost 10 years before the creation of MLA Holdings Pty Ltd. In 1970 Mitsubishi had commenced manufacturing Forklifts of quality in Japan. In 1980 Masuda-san, from Japanese trading company T. Chatani & Co Ltd, invited Ken to head up their new venture distributing Mitsubishi Forklift Trucks in Australia. The first Chairman of MLA was Mr Kanamori and Mike Itani was a founding Director of the company only retiring from this role in 2017.

Mr Kanamori and Masuda-san at T Chatani  Co Office

For the full article please download the pdf here.

 

New Managing Director: Matt Saunders

We're pleased to announce that, as Ken Rathgen retires after 40 years at the helm of MLA Holdings Pty Ltd, Matt Saunders steps up into the role of Managing Director from January 1st, 2020...


matt saunders

For the full article please download the pdf here.

 

Congratulations Steve Cook on 30 years Service!

At MLA Holdings, we understand that our staff are our greatest asset, and we are thrilled to honour Steve’s 30-year dedicated service and commitment to MLA. It is our valued staff whose commitment to MLA’s missionand values that make MLA the organisation it is today....

steve cook

For the full Article please download the pdf here.

 

Always separate pedestrians from forklift traffic

Posted in News


 november sbnov 2019 sb

 A simple traffic plan with separate driving and walking routes prevents collisions.

A simple traffic plan with separate driving and walking routes prevents collisions


On public roads we try to separate fast and slow traffic as much as possible, but this is not what we see in many warehouses. As a result, forklifts and pedestrians sometimes come into undesired contact. A well-considered traffic plan prevents fast and slow traffic from crossing each other’s paths.

november sb


Yellow and green lines

Separating traffic flows is important in the warehouse, just as it is on roads. With lines on the floor, we can create driving routes for forklifts and walkways for pedestrians. Make sure both forklift truck drivers and pedestrians can immediately see which path they should take. This can be achieved using a combination of symbols and different-coloured lines on the floor. Think yellow for train paths, green for footpaths. White lines are for marking storage locations on the floor and red is for locations with fire extinguishers or emergency doors that must always remain accessible.

Warehouses often have areas where many people work intensively at the same time, in an order picking operation for example. Consider marking out separate areas for value-added activities or for preparation of shipments. The people in these zones are mainly focused on their task, not on the traffic around them, so a simple line on the floor is insufficient to separate them from forklifts. You should therefore shield them with physical barriers such as gates. Special traffic lights or audible warnings are also available for warehouses or production sites.

Pedestrian crossings

Of course, it is never entirely possible to avoid the need for pedestrians to cross a forklift route. To make this safer, create crosswalks in the form of pedestrian crossings. Symbols on the floor can be used to encourage forklift drivers to lower their speed. Is safety still insufficiently guaranteed? Then think of installing gates that prevent pedestrians from crossing the route without thinking.

The doorway from one hall to another can create a bottleneck. These are usually very busy locations, while views of traffic on the other side of the wall are often limited. It is advisable to make a door for pedestrians, separate to the opening for forklift traffic. Ideally, it should not be too close to the forklift opening, as pedestrians may be tempted to choose the easiest way. Use a fence to lead them to the door. Gates can also be useful for doors to canteens, changing rooms or toilets, to prevent people from entering the driveway directly when entering the warehouse.

Lead by example

The area immediately surrounding a forklift is one with a high risk of accidents. We can also mark out this safety zone – not with lines stuck on the floor but with visual aids. Take the Mitsubishi Safety Zone System, for instance. This consists of LED lamps that project clear red lines on the floor around the truck. These mark the minimum distance from the truck that employees must maintain in order to work safely.

Finally, make clear agreements about the use of traffic routes, walkways, crosswalks and entrances. Don't forget to make these agreements known to occasional visitors to the warehouse, like office workers, maintenance engineers or guests from outside. And last but not least, set a good example yourself. If managers don’t use the footpaths, why would other employees?

Have a question about forklift pedestrian safety? Please contact MLA on 1300 000 652 or www.mlaholdings.com.au
. Information for this article was sourced from www.forkliftbriefing.com.


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Four essentials of a safe productive fleet

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 199x149x17-09-safety-source-spot-art-1.jpg.pagespeed.ic.pCbWGpe6Eaoctober

There are plenty of simple, small things you can do to improve forklift safety in your facility. These include keeping the floor clean, installing mirrors at the ends of your aisles and prominently displaying safety posters.

 

We have identified four best practices within companies that take forklift safety to the next level. They are:


1.       Operator and Pedestrian Training – When we say training, we mean true training. A one-day class and a 10-minute hands-on review will not suffice if your goal is to make your forklift fleet a truly safe one. In addition to initial training and refresher training, you must be sure you re-train staff any time you introduce a different piece of equipment, if an operator is re-assigned or if your operation or facility undergoes any significant changes.  In addition to operator training, you should ensure the safety of all your employees and guests by providing training to every employee about how forklifts operate, the inherent dangers of being around them and how to conduct themselves in a facility with this equipment. 

2.       Utilize available safety equipment – Ensuring that all your forklifts and facility is equipped with up-to-date and working safety functions will go a long way in creating awareness of the presence of forklifts. Back-up alarms, horns, lights (front and rear combo) and strobes are the hallmarks of forklifts that are easily seen and heard. In addition, be sure to ask your forklift provider about available optional safety equipment including blue spot safety light and red safety zone halo light.

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3.       Safe Handling and Storage of Fuel – Fuel changing stations are often some of the most dangerous locations in your facility. Forklift batteries are very heavy, produce acid and can be very hazardous if not handled within manufacturers’ recommendations. In addition, be sure that your battery changing area is staged properly for safe handling of batteries. Work with your battery and charger provider to ensure you’re providing safe charging and changing methods for your employees. If your forklifts use LPG, petrol or diesel fuel be sure the area is clearly marked and set up properly with the right equipment to refuel them safely.  Making sure that all the right equipment and safety measures are readily available and ensuring that your employees are trained to use them, will mitigate damages in the event of an accident.

 4.       Regular Inspections – We recommend two types of inspections. The first, as required by Regulators, are daily inspections and are a must for any company.  Your operators must be trained to perform accurate and thorough inspections of both Internal Combustion (IC) forklifts, electric forklifts, and any other type of lifting equipment you operate. Damage from previous operations can occur without the operator knowing it, and failure of major components can lead to serious injury, product loss and facility damage. In addition, putting your forklift fleet on a regular service cycle or Planned Maintenance Program, performed by forklift professionals. This is the key to achieving maximum safety, up-time and productivity.

Forklift safety is no accident. Taking these measures puts you on the path to creating a safe and productive work environment for your employees.  An investment in safety and productivity adds to your company’s long-term bottom line and benefits those who operate on and around forklifts.

Have a question about forklift safety, training, service or planned maintenance? Please contact MLA on 1300 000 652 or www.mlaholdings.com.au. Information for this article was sourced from www.mhiusa.net



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