What are Common Forklift Injuries?June 10, 2019
On June 11, manufacturers and industrial companies are asked to recognize and commemorate National Forklift Safety Day. Plenty of workers regularly use forklifts to do their jobs. However, like all machinery, forklift operations can lead to injuries and even fatalities. Research shows that nearly 100,000 forklift accidents are reported each year.
Common Injuries Related to Forklift Use
Because forklifts are unique pieces of machinery, they can lead to specific types of injuries. These include, but are not limited to:
- Pinched fingers and hands: The moving parts of a forklift can quickly close on an individual’s hand, crushing and pinching the fingers. In some cases, this can end in amputation or significant nerve damage.
- Crushed feet: Forklifts are heavy and can become even heavier depending on the load being carried. If a forklift falls onto someone’s foot, they could lose their foot or experience shattered bones.
- Sudden falls: Falling from a forklift is not unheard of, especially if the forklift moves onto an uneven or unsteady surface. Not only is falling from a forklift problematic, but the forklift may continue to run.
- Smacked heads: A forklift operator may incur a head injury if an object falls from the lift or another object, or they hit the machine when entering or exiting. In severe cases, a hit to the head can lead to a concussion.
- Whiplash: Whiplash does not only happen in car accidents, it can also occur during a forklift injury. A collision at relatively slow speed can cause the neck to swing forward and back without warning.
Each of these injuries can be the start of mounting medical bills, lost work days, and emotional suffering.
Preventing Forklift Injuries
On National Forklift Safety Day, companies and safety advocates are asked to focus and distribute information on ways to prevent forklift accidents. The goal is to improve education and awareness to help reduce operator errors and keep workers safe.
Common methods that help reduce forklift accident include:
- Providing every employee with initial and ongoing training, which has been proven to reduce on-the-job accidents by up to 30 percent by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
- Ensuring that only trained, certified individuals operate forklifts.
- Documenting all near-miss forklift accidents.
- Re-training workers after near-miss accidents and actual accidents.
- Using the horn on the forklift to alert other workers at intersections.
- Maintaining and servicing forklifts at regular intervals.
West Chester Workplace Accident Lawyers at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello Help Injured Employees
If you were hurt in a forklift accident, please contact the West Chester workplace accident lawyers at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello to discuss your case before filing your claim or accepting a settlement. For a free consultation, call us at 610-892-4940 or through an online contact form. Located in Media, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Media, Delaware County, and West Chester.