forklift safety checklist

What is a forklift safety checklist?

A forklift safety checklist is used to ensure that all powered industrial vehicles are in proper working condition before they are used. This tool prompts the forklift operator to conduct an inspection of the machine they are about to use. 

Conducting inspections aided by a digital checklist reduces the likelihood of injuries and even deaths that occur from faulty fork lifts. A digital forklift safety checklist allows workers to document their inspections and provides managers with the ability to monitor the results.

Why do you need a forklift safety checklist?

OSHA requires that all industrial trucks receive a thorough examination before being used. If the inspection reveals any issues, then the vehicle should not be used. Furthermore, OSHA requires that fork lifts are inspected once per day, or before every shift if throughout the day.

A forklift safety checklist exists to guide the fork lift operator through a detailed inspection of the vehicle. They will examine major components and mechanisms to ensure proper functionality throughout the shift. 

What should a forklift safety checklist include?

A forklift safety checklist should include items that ensure the safe use of the industrial vehicle. As such, there are several dozens of potential items to include on a forklift safety checklist. Below, we’ll cover a few items that should be included on every checklist.

Key components of a forklift safety checklist

  1. Investigate odd noises
  2. Check maintenance 
  3. Remind of safe use practices

Investigate odd noises

Any odd noises that appear during an inspection should be investigated immediately, especially if they occur when the engine is starting up. The cause of a strange noise can vary, and a specialist may need to look at it, but a strange noise will alert the operator that an issue is present.

Check maintenance

Has the fork lift received all of its required maintenance? Every inspection should include checking maintenance records and maintenance schedules. A missed appointment could result in a major issue during the operation of the fork lift. The use of a digital forklift safety checklist allows workers to document the completion of maintenance services as well.

Remind of safe use practices

Using a fork lift may become like second nature to many operators, but they should still always be reminded of safe usage. This includes a reminder to be aware of any potential hazards, such as a leak or debris, when operating the fork lift. They should also monitor the engine heat to prevent overheating.

The takeaway

Using a forklift safety checklist ensures the safety of fork lift operators and other workers. This vital tool guides the operator through inspecting the vehicle. If a digital checklist is used, the inspection can be thoroughly documented and management will have proof that it has been completed, should the facility be audited.

Forklift safety checklist

Check out our fork life safety checklist today and start implementing fork lift safety best practices into your daily operations.


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