How to Prepare Your Site Before Using Your Forklift

If you're hiring a forklift, you need to take proper safety precautions. In particular, you should ensure that your site is safe and ready to use. Keep these tips in mind as you get ready to use your forklift.

1. Match the Forklift to the Site

It's critical to ensure that the forklift you choose is right for your site. Talk with the hire company about where you plan to use the forklift, and they will point you toward the right choice. For instance, if you are using the forklift indoors, you may want an electric forklift. If you are working on rough terrain, you may want a skid steer on tracks with a forklift attachment.

2. Plot Out Your Route

Before you start using the forklift, make sure that you plot out your route. This way you can identify and make a plan for any hazards before you face them. For instance, if your first route involves a sharp incline that might tip over the forklift, you may decide to take another route.

3. Clear the Site

Before you start working, spend some time clearing your site. If you're working inside, sweep pathways and get debris out of the way so it doesn't catch on your tires. Outside, try to plot out your path and move obstructions. While it may look easy to just drive over planks, they can throw the forklift off balance and lead to an accident. It's always best to work on the smoothest, cleanest surfaces possible.

4. Alert Other Vehicle Operators About Your Forklift

If there are other trucks or heavy machinery working in the area, let those operators know that you will be operating your forklift. High vehicles in particular may not be able to see your short forklift whilst they are backing up. To be as safe as possible, you may want to operate your forklift when there isn't any other equipment in the area, but at the very least, make sure you communicate with other operators before you get started.

5. Post Warning Signs as Needed

In busy environments, you may want to post a few warning signs before you start using the forklift. The right signs can protect your forklift from larger machinery, and they can help to protect pedestrians from your forklift. In lieu of signs, safety cones identifying where your forklift is going to be running can be effective.