SafeWork NSW Forklift Safety Blitz

SafeWork Inspectors are undertaking a forklift safety blitz this week to ensure compliance, raise awareness and help control the risks associated with forklifts. Inspectors will be targeting employers who cut safety corners and risk their workers’ lives when it comes to working with and around forklifts. The regulator says it may issue on-the-spot-fines for offenders.

Every year at Australian workplaces, forklifts continue to cause workplace deaths and injuries resulting in substantial financial and human costs for workers, industry and the community. But it’s not actually the machinery that initiates these incidents – it’s the operators.

SafeWork says the main reasons why people are killed or seriously injured by a forklift include:

  • Being hit by a forklift because of driver error, working too close to the forklift or inadequate traffic management.
  • Being hit by a load a forklift was moving because the driver did not use an attachment when one was needed, or assisting to adjust or steady the load.
  • Not wearing a seat belt in a tip-over. The forklifts mostly tipped because operators were turning on uneven or sloping ground.

SafeWork says forklift incidents can be prevented, especially when workers and businesses work together to improve health and safety at work. epar is developing a Forklift Use Protocol and if you would like a copy simply send us an email. There are some steps you can take to improve safety:

  • Do the epar Take 3 Risk Assessment

  • Display the epar Take 3 Hazard Awareness stickers

  • Assess your workplace to identify areas where pedestrians are at risk of being struck by mobile plant or vehicles

  • Develop a site plan displaying safe routes for vehicles and pedestrians. This must be kept in a clearly visible area

  • Ensure that there is either separation or safe interaction between mobile plant, vehicles and pedestrians

  • Ensure that all drivers and operators of mobile plant are licensed and/or hold an appropriate certificate of competence to operate the vehicle

  • Ensure that your traffic management systems and plans are kept up-to-date and regularly reviewed for effectiveness

Thumbnail image Source and related information – SafeWork Forklift Safety