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Forklift safety risks highlighted

Every workplace is different. As a result, safety risks present in the work environment will vary for each company.

Depending on the nature of the activities taking place however, some places of work may be more dangerous than others.

One example of this is businesses where employees use forklifts.

An incident occurred this week at a market at Homebush West when a man died after the forklift he was driving tipped over after a collision with another forklift.

The dangers inherent in working with these vehicles are outlined in a free resource published by WorkCover NSW.

The safety alert – titled ‘Working with forklifts’ – was released following two separate incidents which occurred in 2011 in which workers were injured while a load was being shifted closeby with a forklift.

WorkCover NSW points out that in both cases there were at least two contributing factors.

These were that procedures for lifting, transporting and lowering the loads did not ensure the stability of the load, and that workers near the forklift were not positioned safely.

The alert lists several safety tips for employers and employees who work with forklifts.

Employers are encouraged to develop and implement safe work systems and make sure staff have the information, training and supervision needed to ensure their health and safety.

It is also noted that forklift operators must hold a relevant license. In NSW, Registered Training Organisations must assess drivers’ training, skills and knowledge before they can apply for a national licence to perform high risk work.

Regarding the operation of forklifts, WorkCover recommends the utmost care in making sure that loads are secure.

This means considering the weight, size, shape and composition of the material being lifted, as well as the terrain that the forklift will need to cover.

Employers need to provide the appropriate equipment required to lift and transport loads. With forklifts, this can mean specially designed attachments for when the tines alone are not suitable to carry a load.

Anyone who suffers an injury as a result of operating a forklift in the workplace may want to speak to compensation lawyers about their entitlement to worker compensation.

Getting specialist advice is a great idea, even if you aren’t sure whether your claim is valid.

That’s because, operating on a no win no fee basis, these experts can advise you on your chances for success free of charge – if they think you have a case, it’s completely up to you whether you engage their services.


© 2013 
Gerard Malouf & Partners
 — Personal Injury Compensation Lawyers

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