Safety starts with a quality forklift

Wayne Chornohus -
Safety First
- 2 Dec 2004 ( #186 )
2 min read
Purchasing the right forklift can be very challenging. If buying new, beware of dealer numbers stating market share, reliability or low maintenance etc. The dealer or seller will tell you whatever he thinks will sell the truck.

Investigate product longevity: does the dealer use this product in his rental fleet? Do other companies use the product in their rental fleets? What is the rental life? Ask about emissions and universal parts availability.

Here are five important tips on how to avoid a bad purchase.

Rule 1. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is
Your alarm bells should ring loud and clear when you hear phrases like "reliable, low hours" and "no repairs required". A good buy depends on many factors: "No risk" often means the biggest risk of all.

Rule 2. Always get a written quote, product disclosure statement (PDS) or offer document
A quote, PDS or offer document means that the issuer of the document takes legal responsibility for what is said. Discuss your proposed purchase with an unbiased person or company. If you want to purchase, find an advisor with the strongest qualifications, experience and integrity first.

Rule 3. Deal only with reputable companies
Free advice is available through me. Lately, many people have been getting faxes out of the blue from companies extolling their products. Too many have lost their money to these "cold callers". Just file unknown flyers in the garbage.

Rule 4. Love your paperwork
When you buy machinery, you usually get a written description of your purchase. Read these statements to make sure everything is in order, then put them away in a safe place. Your paperwork protects you from disagreements after the sale. If you cannot look after it yourself, then get a person you trust, different from whoever sold you the product, to look at it for you and tell you about it.

Rule 5. Avoid anything illegal or quick
The danger here is that you put your money in the hands of someone else. If anything goes wrong, you may be unable to rectify the situation.

Questions, questions, questions - ask questions until you really understand. If you feel uneasy, it's OK to walk away.

Wayne Chornohus is a forklift consultant with Hunter Industries Ltd. He brings more than 20 years' experience in the forklift and training industries to the Forkliftaction.com community.
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