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Why Does OSHA Require Forklift Certification in Atlanta, Georgia?


It is no secret that OSHA won’t hesitate to fine an Atlanta, Georgia, company for failing to comply with their laws, but the question is why? More specifically, why does the Administration require that you obtain forklift certification if you want to drive a forklift in Atlanta or the surrounding areas? Let’s examine the reasons.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is a branch of the Federal government that is concerned with workplace safety. Around 1970, Congress created an act to promote the safety of workers. The best way the government can do this is to create penalties for not following the laws that are put into place to protect workers.

So how does forklift certification fit into the picture? Well, the vehicle is a piece of heavy machinery, and failing to operate it properly can lead to damages, injuries, and even death. According to one study, the most common cause of accidental death was due to overturning the vehicle. If you are unaware of how to safely load the lift or drive the machine, this could easily lead to tipping.

According to that same study, getting proper training significantly reduced the number of errors that operators made. While not all accidents are caused by errors, a vast majority of them are, and knowing how to safely operate your the truck could just save your life or the life of a fellow coworker.

If safety isn’t motivation enough, which may be the case for many companies who are just looking to make a quick buck, the fines will surely deter Georgia employers from ignoring these laws. According to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration, fines can start anywhere from $3,000 to $7,000 per violation, and can increase or decrease based on several factors.

Basically, if you want to be an operator, it is in your best interest to get your required credentials. One of the bonuses, though, is that your license is not state-specific, meaning that it will be recognized in all of Georgia, the United States, and even Mexico and Canada. So head on over to our website at and enroll today.

 

Nashville and Surrounding Areas – Tennessee Forklift Training


Tennessee has numerous opportunities for forklift drivers. Industries you could find work include home improvement stores, warehouses, recycling and distribution centers. If you desire a position in one of these areas, you must be at least 18 years of age and be certified. Your chances will greatly improve should you acquire certification before applying for a job. Taking a certification program is affordable and will improve your chances of finding a well paying job.

The good news is once you take the plunge and get your credentials, they will be good throughout the entire US, Canada, and Mexico. That means if life takes you outside of Nashville, you’re still covered.

One of the reasons this training is so important is to keep you and the people around you free from harm. The fork on your vehicle can cause a lot of damage if used inappropriately. That’s why OSHA has taken such a strong stance on this. In fact, if you are found to be operating the vehicle without the proper license, you or your employer could be on the hook for up to $10,000 in fines.

As you go through the training program, you won’t find any surprises. You’ll be reviewing the different kinds of devices, safety and maintenance instructions, how to properly load and unload the fork, and more. If you really want to get a good feel for what you’re in for, you can take our complimentary quiz to see how much you already know.

Forklift Accident and the Importance of Safety and Maintenance


Several years ago a forklift accident in a warehouse setting left one casualty. The employee had his legs trapped under a steel beam that had fallen from a lift. Emergency crews had to use a crane to lift the beam off of the employee. Though the man was rushed to a nearby hospital, he later passed away due to the complications associated with the accident. He was only 39 years old.

Initially it was thought that a fallen crane was involved in the accident, but once an investigation was launched it was determined to be the spreader bar from the vehicle. OSHA was involved in the investigation and said it would take weeks before a final determination could be made.

Accidents and casualties in the workplace are avoidable by proper safety and equipment training. The first thing a driver should do is walk around the vehicle to make sure there is not a potential problem. Depending on the type of device being used, there are several checks that should be performed. Battery fluids and hydraulic oil needs to be checked, hoses checked for damages and leaks, tires checked for proper inflation and lug nuts for tightness, fuel, fire extinguisher, just to name a few. A more extensive list can be found here.

A machine that is defective, or unsafe, should be taken out of service immediately. All problems need to be recorded on the appropriate documents and reported to the supervisor. Never operate a machine that requires maintenance or is unsafe. All repairs should be made by authorized personnel, do not attempt to fix the problem yourself unless you are trained and have authorization. Preventative maintenance should be performed according to the manufacturer.

Ensuring operators learn the proper measures result in fewer injuries, unnecessary costs and prolongs the life of the forklift.

How To Do Load Testing on a Forklift


Load testing your unit is required by OSHA each year and after major repairs in order to avoid unnecessary accidents, injuries, and deaths. There are certain steps that should be followed before beginning load testing.

  1. The first thing you should do is test the brakes without a load and limiting safety equipment and features. This will help determine if the mechanisms are working properly and minimize the risk of tipping over.
  2. Gather test weights matching the maximum rated load specification as indicated in the operations manual. Weigh the test load to be lifted to ensure the accuracy to be within minus five percent of rated capacity.
  3. Load the test weights and ensure the slippage isn’t more than three inches vertically and one inch horizontally. You should raise the load to maximum for a minimum of 10 minutes to ensure the vehicle doesn’t lower or drop the load.
  4. If it fails the load test, require the maintenance needed and perform the test again.
  5. Once you have successfully completed the test load, you should write a report stating steps used.

Following these steps will put you on the road to safe driving and accident prevention.

Daily Forklift Maintenance


There are many businesses that require a forklift for daily operations. If your business requires moving heavy materials, then most likely you will be using one of these vehicles. Various types of FLs are available for different situations, such as diesel, gas or electric. It doesn’t matter what type of machine you are using, or whether it’s new or used; all require daily maintenance.

Each driver should be qualified for daily maintenance. The first thing a driver should do is walk around the truck to inspect for potential problems. Depending on the type of device you own, below are some checks that should be performed:

  • Battery fluids and hydraulic oil.
  • Hoses for damage and leaks.
  • Tires for damage and inflation pressure, as well as lug nuts for tightness.
  • Battery and cables for damage.
  • Fuel.
  • Fire extinguisher.
  • Engine coolant.
  • Drive belts.
  • Ensure Lights are in working order.
  • Safety equipment.
  • Back up alarm/horn are properly working.
  • Steering, clutch and brakes.
  • Fork condition.
  • Ensure all warning decals and plates are legible and in place. Be sure the nameplate matches the model and serial numbers.
  • Operations manual is on the forklift.

Personal protective equipment should always be used when performing maintenance. While driving the forklift you need to be aware of the potential hazards; mechanical breakdown, fire, overheating and leakage.

A forklift that is defective, or unsafe, should be taken out of service immediately. All problems need to be recorded on the appropriate documents and reported to the supervisor. Never operate a machine that requires maintenance or is unsafe. All repairs should be made by authorized personnel, do not attempt to fix the problem yourself unless you are trained and have authorization. Preventative maintenance should be performed according to the manufacturer.

Ensuring forklift operators learn these measures will result in fewer injuries, unnecessary costs and will prolong the life of the vehicle.