Forklift training is something that you would think is obvious when you consider that forklifts are large pieces of equipment with many moving parts and lots of power. When looking at the numbers, forklifts cause around 85 fatalities a year. 35,000 accidents which result in serious injury and another 61,000 resulting in non-serious injuries. These numbers are from OSHA. According to the Industrial Truck Association, there are currently around 855 thousand forklifts in the United States.
This means that over 11% of all forklifts in the country will be involved in an accident within the next year. This is a high number and makes us wonder if workers are being trained properly on how to operate forklifts. The ITA has also reported that the average lifespan of a forklift is around 8 years, which means around 90% of all forklifts will be involved in an accident sometime during their regular life. Regardless of what is the cause of the problem, it is still obvious that this is a serious problem and needs to be handled. If you are a forklift operator then you have a very good chance of experiencing some type of accident during the course of your career. To help workers and managers better understand the dangers of operating a forklift, we have put together this guide to help remind people why forklift safety training is so important.
The most frequent causes of fatal forklift accidents.
- 42% of fatalities resulted from being crushed by the forklift tipping over.
- 25% of fatalities resulted from being crushed between the forklift and a different surface.
- 11% of fatalities resulted from being crushed between two forklifts.
- 10% of fatalities resulted from being struck or run over by a forklift.
- 8% of fatalities resulted from being struck by falling material from a forklift.
- 4% of fatalities resulted from falling from the platform on the forklift.
The most common locations and industries of fatal forklift accidents.
- 42.5% of fatalities occurred while manufacturing.
- 23.8% of fatalities occurred during construction.
- 12.5% of fatalities occurred in the wholesale trade industry.
- 11% of fatalities occurred in the transportation industry.
- 9% of fatalities occurred in the retail trade industry.
- 1.2% occurred while mining.
Forklift fatalities occur in virtually every industry that deals with construction, mining, manufacturing or transportation of materials. Studies have indicated that a majority of these accidents could have been avoided with the correct forklift safety training. Forklift safety training is important because drivers who operate forklifts without the proper training become a danger to themselves and any other employees working in their area. Let us also remind you that is it required by OSHA that all operators of forklifts be properly trained. It is the law.