Avoid These Frequent Forklift Driver Errors With Approved Forklift Certification


Incidents involving forklifts in the workplace have resulted in injuries and fatalities and cost companies thousands of dollars in fines. One New Zealand company had to pay a hefty $272,000 fine after an employee’s leg was crushed in a forklift accident. Professional forklift certification remains the best way to avoid forklift accidents caused by operator behaviour. By identifying common driver errors, you can put measures in place to protect your employees, visitors and your company’s exposure to exorbitant fines.

Avoidable Forklift Driver Errors

Common causes of forklift accidents range from driver behaviour (speeding, failure to communicate with other employees in the immediate vicinity and performing tricks) to mechanical (not maintaining or repairing forklifts as recommended) and organisational factors (companies ignoring the importance of proper professional forklift training for operators). Here are four common forklift driver errors that can be avoided.

  1. Transporting Heavy Loads

A forklift truck bearing over capacity loads renders a truck unstable and likely to tip over. This danger is escalated when a forklift is operated on wet or uneven surfaces.

  1. Driving At Excessive Speed

Improperly trained operators are more likely to be guilty of driving at high speed. During proper training, an operator is made aware of the serious consequences of driving too fast and the consequences of losing control.

  1. Manoeuvring With An Elevated Load

The danger of driving a forklift with an elevated load is that the load can fall off and cause an injury or impeding the view of the operator that can lead to injury.

  1. Leaving A Forklift Unattended With Its Engine On

It is never okay to abandon a forklift while the engine is still switched on, even if it’s within an operator’s view. A properly parked forklift has its engine shut off and brakes set.

How To Avoid Serious Consequences Of Forklift Incidents

A good dose of common sense and implementing best practice techniques in driving, manoeuvring, loading and unloading and parking a forklift will go a long way towards preventing accidents. In addition, so will observing safety practices as laid down by WorkSafe NZ.

For forklift certification for employees that meets OSHO rules and regulations, give RT Equipment a call. Our certification programmes range from beginner level to advanced and refresher courses.

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  • Daniel C