According to Safe Work Australia, nearly 40 work-related fatalities have occurred this year. Many of these deaths have occurred in the transport, postal, and warehousing industries while a few in the construction industry.
A common factor in these unfortunate events is the use of malfunctioning equipment and machinery, such as forklifts.
Injuries, fatalities and penalties due to use of faulty forklifts
The website Safety Culture has an archive of all forklift-related incidents that resulted not only in penalties but also in injuries and fatalities.
For instance, the site has reported that one of the largest manufacturers of paper products in the country received a penalty of $400,000 due to a safety failure of a forklift that resulted in the death of the machinery’s driver. Another accident that resulted in a fatality involved a toddler hit by an accidentally moving forklift. Then, there was the incident wherein a young worker died due to the tipping over of a forklift that crushed him.
There are plenty of other accidents involving forklifts that lead to injuries and deaths of workers and even non-employees, all of which contribute to the rising concern of proper machine use and maintenance.
The consequences of operating faulty forklifts
Everyone is well aware that forklifts are extremely heavy machines. So when they malfunction, their weight can easily trap and crush people beneath and underneath them. Accidental forklift hits can even send someone flying, just like what happens during car collisions involving pedestrians. Tipping over also puts not only the driver but also people near the machine in extreme danger of finding themselves trapped and crushed.
Forklift repairs and servicing: Responsibility of employers
One way to minimise these workplace hazards, especially involving heavy equipment according to Koala Trucks Forklift Wholesalers, is to routinely work with a mobile forklift service in Sydney for thorough inspections, tune-ups, repairs and replacements.
As an employer, you should take full responsibility for the safety of your employees. You need to make sure that the equipment they use work properly and will not put them in danger.