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Surprising Forklift Dangers

Forklift InjuriesAcross the board, forklifts may be one of the most useful pieces of industrial equipment a business owner purchases. Forklifts are essential in the efficient movement of bulky items. Some businesses even use forklifts to move people with the use of the appropriate forklift attachments. Their versatility and practicality are unarguable; however, the convenience comes with significant risks. Forklifts are also among the most dangerous areas of a workplace. The following are the most common forklift injuries, as well as how to prevent them.

“Struck by” Forklift

“Struck by” accidents are so prevalent that they rank among OSHA’s “Fatal Four.” These injuries happen when an object or piece of equipment hits the victim. Although they can be similar to “caught in” or “caught between” accidents, “struck by” accidents are different because they do not entail crush injuries. Surprisingly, forklifts are responsible for a significant portion of these incidents. The equipment has a large number of blind spots; it also travels quickly and quietly. All of these factors create a deadly combination. Forklifts should operate in designated areas, and pedestrians should avoid these locations to reduce these risks, as well as having a clearly marked driving path.

Overturned Forklifts

Overturned forklifts are the most common and deadly among forklift incidents. Despite their frequency, many forklift operators are taken off-guard by how quickly it happens. Loading the equipment unevenly or overloading it can lead to the machine turning over, thus trapping or crushing a driver or another worker.

Other behaviors that can result in catastrophe are traveling too quickly or operating on uneven ground. According to OSHA, drivers attempting to jump from an overturning forklift make injuries worse. These machines are known for their proclivity to topple. Manufacturers reinforce the cabs to protect the driver better. In the event the forklift does begin to overturn, drivers should remain seated, restrained with the seat belt, and should prepare for impact.

Other Surprising Injury Causes

Forklifts pose a wide variety of hazards. In addition to overturning and potentially hitting pedestrians, these machines also create air quality concerns. Other workers suffer injuries from falling from forklifts, failing to use the seat belt, or operating without a license. These injuries range from severe to fatal, often resulting in the inability to work and an overwhelming amount of medical bills. Workers’ compensation does not always cover all of the incurred costs.

The attorneys at Corsiglia McMahon & Allard, L.L.P. understand your frustration. Whether you are a forklift operator or another worker who suffered injuries in a forklift accident, our San Jose forklift accident injury attorneys will help you earn fair compensation. Call us today at (408) 289-1417 to schedule your free consultation to discuss your options.

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