Let's start at the very beginning

Wayne Chornohus -
Safety First
- 24 Mar 2016 ( #762 )
2 min read
Wayne Chornohus started repairing forklifts in Canada about 50 years ago and since then has held various managerial positions with independents and dealerships alike. Eventually, he started a unique operator training company, unique in technical depth and accuracy. A decade later, he formally retired and now teaches English in foreign climes and does some technical consulting.
In my last column, I addressed how mundane much of the training rhetoric has become. In this post and future contributions, I would like to examine some of the hardcore repetitious safety statements and provide perspective.

"Alice: How long is forever? White Rabbit: Sometimes, just one second." - Lewis Carroll

In one second or less, a life can be changed forever. Before starting work, it is always recommended that the operator does a pre-shift inspection. But what is a pre-shift inspection? Is the operator qualified to do an inspection? Most companies provide a list to help the operator conduct the inspection in an orderly fashion. In reality, most operators just check off each item and go to work.

Unfortunately, many trainers often give items on the list a superficial explanation. But if we give the operator some interesting and relevant education, he just might realise how important the check is.

Let's take one item to review: Check forks. That is, check for wear and tear and any abnormalities. Wear at the heel of the fork reduces the fork capacity tremendously. Even if the wear is as little as 10%, the fork capacity is compromised and it is recommended that set of forks be replaced.

Okay, we have checked the fork and latches, but have we given any thought to the cause of wear at the heel? Do you know that if a forklift is maintained properly, the forks will last forever as far as heel wear goes? Thus, financial as well as safety benefits to a good inspection!

To check if maintenance has been done properly, set the mast in the vertical position with the forklift on a flat and level surface. Lower the forks fully. If a fork touches the ground, the chains require adjustment. Once again, the forks should not touch the surface or floor in the fully lowered position with the mast vertical on a SDCB forklift. Sometimes, the tyres will require replacement, especially on a cushion tyre forklift.

Adjusting the chains is easy but dangerous; only experienced forklift mechanics should perform the adjustment. The technician should also check for chain wear at the same time. Chains will stretch a surprising amount from new.

So what if a fork breaks? A standard ITA Class 2 fork can weigh more than the operator. If a fork breaks, it is usually under load and could fly through the air, causing a "forever" injury.

If there are any pre-shift inspection items that you would like to know more about, please contact me here .
Also Read:
Slow and steady always wins the race
Nick Welch
3 minute read
Slow and steady always wins the race Safety First - 7 Apr 2016 (#764) Materials handling is not a sprint, if you want to do it safely, according to Nick Welch.
Forklift maintenance to minimise cost and maximise uptime
Gian Schiava
4 minute read
Forklift maintenance to minimise cost and maximise uptime Safety First - 10 Mar 2016 (#760) Forklift and warehouse trucks are a significant capital investment, even when deployed on full rental or contract hire terms. As economies all over Europe show signs of recovery, it makes sense to keep a close eye on the bottom line to sustain this fragile growth. Gian Schiava examines how fleet managers can use planning and prevention to reduce operating costs.
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Blog articles provide perspectives and opinions and therefore may contain inaccurate or incomplete information. Forkliftaction Media accepts no responsibility for errors or omissions. If you feel that significant facts are overlooked, or have a different viewpoint on a topic addressed, we invite you to open a conversation in our Discussion Forums.

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Inside The News
Things get a little political this week as we bring big announcements from US President Joe Biden and UK Transport Secretary Mark Harper that will affect the global supply chain industry in different ways... Continue reading

Are you recruiting? Find your ideal candidate among a diverse range of materials handling professionals:

Forkliftaction's JOB MARKET

Inside The News
Things get a little political this week as we bring big announcements from US President Joe Biden and UK Transport Secretary Mark Harper that will affect the global supply chain industry in different ways... Continue reading
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