Forklifts are commonplace in almost every warehouse across the country. They make it far easier to carry heavy goods from one place to another.
While the benefits of forklifts are numerous, they are also potentially dangerous pieces of machinery. Recognizing some of the more common causes of forklift accidents could help companies to foster a safer working environment, and ultimately avoid accidents that can be catastrophic.
Can anyone operate a forklift?
It is neither safe nor legal for any person just to jump on a forklift and operate it straight away. All states, including Illinois, require forklift drivers to obtain a valid license. During the certification process, workers will go through a written exam, oral examination and driving assessment, to ensure that they are competent to carry out the work. Inexperience is a common cause of devastating accidents and you should not be required to operate a forklift without training or be exposed to anyone else who is not qualified.
While accomplished forklift drivers can work at a rapid pace, this should never be at the cost of safety. Before a heavy load is carried from one destination to another, drivers have a responsibility to ensure that the cargo is secure. Many accidents result from a load becoming detached from the forklift, which exposes anyone in the vicinity to a risk of being crushed or seriously injured.
You should be safe in the knowledge that your employer has taken every possible step to implement a safe working environment. If you have been injured on the job then you may have a legal route to compensation for the harm you have suffered.