How NOT to operate a forklift
Some of you might be Formula 1 forklift drivers and some of you might have only messed around with one on site. Either way, to help you stay safe, we’ve put together some great tips for how NOT to operate a forklift. Note the NOT in capital letters…
1. Wear dark, baggy clothing.
You want to be comfy when driving right? Who cares that your baggy pants could get caught in a mechanism and rip off your leg? Who cares if no one can see you when you’re rocking around? Also don’t forget to take off the hard hat, it’s just cramping your style.
ACTUALLY: Always wear safety clothing when operating a forklift – this means hard hat, high-visibility jackets and safety shoes.
2. Drive as fast as you can
How fast do forklifts go? Want to see if you can find out? It’s totally fine, your workmates will get out of the way and when you smash into that wall, you’ll be all good, what’s a few broken bones? And if you get fired, well that’s just the way things go.
ACTUALLY: Always operate a forklift at safe speeds. Corners and turns need to be taken slowly to avoid tipping and stops must be done gradually.
3. Give your mates a lift
Get one balanced on the front and one hanging off the back and you can take your mates from one end of the site to the other in no time. Never mind that someone could fall off and get themselves killed or you could wreck $40,000 worth of machinery.
ACTUALLY: You can still take your mates along, just make sure that there’s a proper seat for each person and you’re driving safely.
4. Dukes of Hazzard it over the obstacles
Loose objects? Slippery ground? Challenge accepted! Hoon around like you’re a rally driver who doesn’t have time for uneven surfaces and bumps. You might knock yourself out and harm others, but whatever, yeee-haaaaww!
ACTUALLY: When operating a forklift, you should always avoid uneven surfaces, slippery roads and bumps. Forklifts are not 4x4s so don’t treat them like it!
5. Compete in the Forklift Weightlifting Championships
Find the heaviest thing around and try to lift it with your forklift. Concrete slabs? Your mate’s truck? Give it a go! You’ll only damage the forklift and potentially send yourself flying into said heaviest thing…
ACTUALLY: Never try to move loads that exceed the capacity of the forklift. You also need to make sure that whatever you’re lifting is secured and stable to avoid any accidents.