The demands placed upon modern industrial trucks and their operators are continually increasing. Forklifts are expected to transport heavier loads, clear higher heights in narrower more confined spaces, work faster, more flexibly and more efficiently. As the demands increase, unfortunately so does the risk of an accident.
The safety of people is central to Linde Material Handling's
global Zero Accident Philosophy, where our goal is to help our customers avoid 100% of accidents. Safety is a huge part of our DNA, it is what drives every single advancement for any new forklift or solution we design, and we always design to suit a range of budgets.
As a result of this, Linde safety systems can be found built-in as standard in our top of the range innovative industrial trucks including Safety Pilot, SpeedAssist, CurveAssist and Dynamic Mast Control. We also provide affordable and adaptable safety solutions that can be retrofitted into almost any application including those that can improve visibility like VertiLight, TruckSpot, BlueSpot and LED Stripes as well as additional intelligent assistance systems that help businesses master the diverse challenges of modern intralogistics.
One of our most recent intelligent assistance systems is the Linde Safety Guard. A unique, tried and tested, flexible and effective piece of technology that protects people, trucks, infrastructure and goods in a wide range of applications by increasing safety awareness through active monitoring and alarming. By providing warnings in the event of potential hazards, via acoustic signals, flashing LED lights or vibrations, everybody who could be at risk knows exactly what's going on and where the danger is, giving them the chance to react and avoid it.
Linde Safety Guard is programmable to help warn of potential collisions between trucks and people, between multiple trucks and between trucks and infrastructure as well as being able to automatically trigger speed limiters. Watch the short video below for a breakdown on the different ways Linde Safety Guard can be incorporated into an application.
Stopping collisions between trucks and people
Common collisions between forklifts and humans can occur:
Developing an Intelligent Safety Zone
- At corners, crossovers and low visibility areas where walkways and roads intersect
- When a pedestrian is passing through an entrance/exit and crossing the truck route
- When a truck passes through a gate and crosses a walkway
To stop collisions between trucks and people, we needed to develop a safety zone around the forklift however, we couldn't use a generic circular safety zone as it didn't truly represent the critical areas to avoid. So we developed an intelligent safety zone that followed the general shape of the forklift.
Using smart, adaptive warning zones which activate depending on the direction the forklift is travelling in, Safety Guard is able to determine when a pedestrian enters the critical area too close to the forklift - with a position accuracy of 10cm. With an intelligent safety zone established, there are no annoyingly frequent (and usually ignored) notifications that you'd get with a standard circular safety zone - and warnings are only triggered when there is clear danger.
When Linde Safety Guard is set up for a forklift and pedestrian situation, it consists of a unit that goes in the truck and a unit or interactive warning vest that is worn by the pedestrian - both units are in constant communication with each other.
The truck unit detects how many people are in its safety zone, alerting the driver via an alarm and showing them in what direction the people are located via red LED lights. At the same time, the pedestrian unit/vest lights up, vibrates, and alarms if within the forklift safety zone. The pedestrian unit also comes with a battery discharge indicator, meaning when the battery runs flat the unit will alarm, vibrate and light up signaling it needs to be recharged (a unique feature only found on this assistance system in the market).
Two independently adjustable warning zones can be established which warn the driver and automatically reduce the speed of the forklift. The stopping safety zone can also automatically decrease if the forklift is travelling slow and can increase if it's travelling faster, plus if the truck is stationary the entire safety zone can become inactive.
Safety Guard can also come with the option of static units that can be fixed to walls to further support signaling around corners, at crossings and in low visibility areas. There's also an ability to automatically trigger electronic door locks to stop a pedestrian from stepping out into oncoming traffic, as well automatically slow a forklift down when passing through a gate or crossing a walkway.
Stopping collisions between multiple trucks
Collisions between trucks can usually happen due to blind crossings and low visibility in shelving and aisles. By placing Safety Guard truck units in each truck, drivers in the immediate vicinity are warned of other trucks and are alerted in which direction they're coming from.
There's also an option for a small truck unit that can be placed in forklifts to alert the drivers when approaching and entering a dynamic zone that has high traffic, with the option to automatically trigger speed limiters.
Stopping collisions between trucks and infrastructure
Common accidents involving infrastructure is when:
- A forklift collides with a door: Due to a combination of the door not lifting fast enough and the forklift approaching at such a high speed it can't stop in time
- The driver doesn't realise the mast of the forklift is too high and it hits the top of the door
Safety Guard can assist with reducing these types of accidents by:
Automatically enforcing speed limits
- Placing a static unit by the door which warns the driver when they're entering a safety zone - with an option to automatically trigger a speed limiter on approach
- Adding an additional sensor to detect lift mast height and provide a warning and alarm to the driver if the mast is too high in the safety zone
- Making the door open automatically as the truck approaches
Common problems businesses run into with drivers is their failure to comply with specific driving speeds within enclosed spaces, and entering enclosed spaces from the outside at an excessive speed. Safety Guard can be implemented by defining zones in which the truck speed is automatically reduced.
This is particularly useful for when the forklift is entering an order picking area for example. With Safety Guard defined speed zones and physical markers defining the danger zone, order pickers know exactly where they're safe and where to be cautious.
Another great use for Safety Guard is creating virtual gates in areas where multiple trucks are driving through. This again triggers the speed limiter of all trucks automatically when they cross through one virtual gate, and allows them to resume a higher speed once they pass through the other virtual gate on the other side.
Safety Guard sensors can also be placed at forklift roadway crossing points and narrow sections of road where a warning alert and speed restriction is imposed only when another truck is approaching, as well as at pedestrian crossings where speed limiters can be automatically triggered.
Making Linde Safety Solutions available for all businesses in intralogistics
At Linde, we know how complicated modern intralogistics can be in Australia. Safety Guard is such a versatile solution that it can easily be adapted to suit almost any application, and hopefully we've been able to demonstrate that in this article.
In keeping with our global Zero Accident Philosophy, we want to ensure that any business working in intralogistics can access the wide array of Linde safety solutions on offer. That's why we have multiple safety options available that can be retrofitted to any application, regardless of whether you use Linde forklifts or not. If you're looking for ways to improve safety in your business, please contact us. We will work with you to find the best fit for purpose safety solution, no matter what your budget.
For further information on the Linde Safety Guard or other Linde Safety Solutions, please contact us at:
Linde Material Handling Australia
Tel: 1300 454 633