Safe sites save lives – that’s the message from National Forklift Safety Day which is being held today, Tuesday, June 13.
The aim of the forklift safety campaign is to drive up safety standards across the UK by making all construction and warehouse workers aware of the steps they need to take to stay safe and protected while using a forklift truck, including the need to wear a seatbelt.
To coincide with National Forklift Safety Day, the team at Acorn Safety Services shares their own advice for making sites even safer.
Putting health and safety in the driving seat
Construction sites and warehouses are dangerous places with the risk of potential for accidents extremely high. According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) around a quarter of all workplace traffic accidents involve forklift trucks and many of them are caused by poor supervision and a lack of training.
Thankfully, with the introduction of health and safety measures serious accidents are rare, but as with all things health and safety there is always room improvement.
This year, we are pleased to see that National Forklift Safety Day is centred around raising awareness of the proper use of seatbelts. According to National Forklift Safety Day, the primary purpose of any restraint is to ensure they stay inside the structure of the forklift truck, protecting them from injury in the event of the truck tipping over.
Those responsible for health and safety should also make sure that other members of staff are kept away from areas where forklift trucks are in operation through the use of physical barriers, signage and traffic systems.
Keeping a close eye on plant
It also makes sense that forklift trucks are properly maintained, and strict rules are now in place to ensure everyone’s safety.
For example, annual examinations, called Thorough Examinations are required to ensure all the moving parts of a forklift are in good working order. In the same way that an MOT would be carried out on a car, a Thorough Examination, carried out by a certified examiner, is a legal requirement for forklift trucks. The examination focusses on areas including brakes, steering and tyres, as well as the lifting mechanisms.
The industry standard for Thorough Examinations is the CFTS which supports businesses in agriculture, construction and material handling.
Anyone operating a forklift truck should have a competency card to prove that they have the relevant training and qualifications in place to operate the equipment safety.
The HSE has also set a minimum standard of training that an operator should receive before attempting to drive a fork lift truck on their own.
Support whenever you need it
Acorn Safety Services regularly visit construction sites across the UK, working with some of the biggest names in construction as a trusted health and safety partner.
Much of our work centres around the use of equipment, advising contractors on plant safety and putting measures in place to ensure that all vehicles are able to move around any site freely and safely.
Our highly trained consultants visit clients in all four nations, and are able to support and advise on any queries relating to National Forklift Safety Day, helping to ensure that the correct documents and certifications are in place relating to all equipment and their operators.
We’re always just a call or an email away – not just on National Forklift Safety Day!
For more information about the wide range of services available, visit our website at www.acornhealthandsafety.co.uk or book a FREE 30-minute online call today with one of our consultants.