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Forklift Accident Case 30

In a warehouse a worker is trying to take down a batch of carton boxes using a lift truck. The boxes are stacked up on pallets in three layers, and he wants to remove the uppermost ones by inserting the lift forks into the pallet. While he was doing the job, the pallet disarrayed some boxes in the stack (of the second floor).

In order to put them back in order, he climbs up the mast without switching off the engine and starts the work with his left leg on the head guard and the right leg on the mast. A couple of tumbled boxes are placed on top of the head guard.

Can you predict what's about to happen?

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He slipped down in between the mast and the head guard. One of his feet then kicked the tilt lever by accident and the mast was tilted. He was killed, sandwiched in between.

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Tips for preventing similar accidents

1) Do not climb up or step on any other part of a lift truck than the operator's compartment.
*Never put a hand, foot or any other part of the body in the mast of lift trucks. It may be caught in a moving part of the mast, causing a serious bodily injury.
*Do not use the mast of lift trucks as a substitute for a ladder. He/she may slip off the mast and fall off.

2) Lower the work equipment.
* Lower work equipment like a fork or bucket to the lowest position possible.
* Take precautions required of loading vehicles such as switching off the engine and applying a parking brake without fail to ensure their safety parking.

3) Prepare for a ladder and a scaffold for warehouse works and store them in a designated location. Make their availability well known to the warehouse workers.

4) Do not try to handle cargos in unsteady conditions. If they threaten to fall off, start to handle them only after they are fastened, assuring neither fall-off nor disarray.
*Start to handle cargos stacked in multi layers only after they are fastened with a rope.


(Source: JICOSH - Japan International Center for Occupational Safety and Health)

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