Safety Tips for Using a Pallet Truck

Loaded pallets can only be safely moved with a pallet truck or forklift. Pallet trucks (also referred to as pallet jacks) are therefore an unsurprising staple of warehouses all over the world, as well as loading docks and shipping centers.

Pallet truck operators must be well trained in the use of this machinery—there is special instruction required for use of this equipment if it is to be handled safely. It’s the responsibility of companies to ensure this training occurs and that operators follow all of the proper safety protocols. Otherwise, the company could be liable for any injuries and accidents that occur from improper use of the equipment.

Here are some pallet truck safety tips to keep in mind in your Bryan, OH warehouse:

  • Instruction: Make sure all workers who will be using a pallet truck or pallet jack are thoroughly trained in its use before operation. This means they should get practical experience and training with every type of pallet truck your facility has—it shouldn’t just be a theoretical training class. Workers must be fully comfortable with using the equipment before they’re allowed to proceed with standard work.
  • Inspections: Regularly inspect pallet trucks before operation. You should specifically be on the lookout for cracking in the frame, or any evidence of stress that could be caused by weight or collisions. It’s normal for pallet trucks to experience some wear and tear over time, but when you notice it, you must take action to either make the necessary repairs or use a different piece of equipment. Specific parts to check include the wheels, the forks and the hydraulic lift.
  • Capacity: Make sure all workers know the pallet jack’s operational capacity. This is the maximum weight the truck can carry, not a recommended limit. You should never approach the maximum; make it a point that all workers should stay well below that threshold. If needed, load the items into separate groups or use a pallet jack with larger capacity rather than overloading a smaller pallet jack.
  • Route: Make sure you plan out routes with pallet trucks in advance so you are aware of your destination and any hazards that might lie along the way. Keep corridors and floors clear, so your travel route is uninhibited and you don’t accidentally collide with or run over anything.
  • Practice common sense: There are certain safety tips that should just be common sense. You should never stand or ride on the pallet jack, or carry a passenger along with you. Do not use it as a stepstool, or engage in any horseplay. Always keep the operating handle in neutral when the pallet truck is in motion. Always wear personal protective equipment, including appropriate toe-protected footwear with anti-slip designs. If you’re going to be lifting items up high, it’s a good idea to wear eye and head protection. Never put your hands or feet under the truck, and only raise the pallet as high as necessary.

For more information about pallet truck safety or to purchase warehouse and industrial supplies in Bryan, OH, we encourage you to contact the experts at Lamberson Packaging Solutions.

Leave a Reply