Forklift Safety in the Warehouse

A few weeks ago, we discussed a variety of hazards that affect warehouse workers each year, from the improper use of equipment to poor respiratory protection. It is no secret that warehouse workers put their lives at risk each day, especially when you take a look at statistics. Did you know that the fatal injury rate for warehouse workers is higher than the national average for workers in ALL industries? That is quite an eye-opener!


As promised, our agency is ready to focus on a few of these hazards and provide a few safety tips that may end up saving employees’ lives. This week, let’s focus on forklift safety. According to OSHA, “About 100 employees are killed and 95,000 are injured every year while operating forklifts in all industries.” To avoid becoming a part of this statistic, it is important to:

• Train, evaluate and certify any employee who will be operating a forklift
• Make sure all forklift operators are over the age of 18
• Always examine the forklift for defects or issues before operating it
• Never exceed 5mph on a forklift
• Do not drive a forklift on slippery surfaces, if you can help it
• Never attempt to handle loads that are heavier than the weight capacity of the forklift
• Follow the proper procedures for picking up, stacking and putting down objects
• Keep an eye out for others while driving a forklift, especially when backing up
• Prohibit stunt driving, tricks or play in the warehouse

As a Massachusetts business owner, you can only do so much to protect your employees (training, safety gear, equipment, coverage). For those times that you could not avoid an accident and you need to report an injury, your workers compensation will be there to aid you. The last thing you need is a large lawsuit stemming from an employee injury! For more information, contact our agents at Wolpert Insurance.