The Forklift Boss Blog

Blog posts from Marshall Cromer, "The Forklift Boss". Follow us for information on forklift safety, available parts, & upcoming technologies shaping the future of material handling!
Forklift Boss Blog
  • Unsafe Forklift Driving: 10 Warning Signs to Watch For

    by Chris Williams, The Forklift Boss | Feb 23, 2018

    Are your forklift operators driving safely?

    Worker SafetyWe're always tempted to say, "Of course!" to a question like this. But the truth is, unsafe driving can happen anytime. Someone speeds up a little too much, takes a corner a little too fast, they tip a load…and you have an accident.

    In our industry though, accidents come with warning signs. A damaged forklift will cause trouble before it breaks down. Similarly, we can spot unsafe driving before it causes accidents.

    We've collected several warnings signs from our own experiences, and those of our customers, to help you prevent accidents before they start.

    The 10 Warning Signs of Unsafe Forklift Operation

    Here are ten warning signs to watch out for. If you see one or more of these, chances are someone is driving their forklift improperly.

    1. Loud Noises

    Forklifts aren't silent when running. But like any vehicle, they make more noise when overworked. (Noisy forklifts may need maintenance too, which can also prevent accidents.)

    2. Complaints

    Make sure employees know that they should make management aware of improper driving. Everyone's in a rush…but nobody should rush a forklift.

    3. Shouting

    Did you hear someone shout, "Hey, slow down!"? Then someone needs to slow down!

    4. Frequent Opportunity Charging (for Electric Forklifts)

    You're aware of the charging interval necessary for electric forklifts. If operators are "opportunity charging" (charging during the shift) more frequently, chances are they're pushing the battery too hard.

    5. Increase in Fuel Consumption (for LPG forklifts)

    Fuel costs for LPG forklifts should remain stable week after week. If you have an increase, especially a sudden one, somebody is pushing that forklift too hard.

    6. Extra Riders

    Is someone hanging onto the side of a forklift while it's in motion? Or worse, standing on the forks? Get them off there right away!

    7. Crowded Lanes

    Forklifts need space not just to run, but to turn. Extra boxes, pallets, even trash on the warehouse floor? Remove it at once.

    8. Forklifts Jerking/Moving Erratically

    If a forklift jerks while operating, it either needs maintenance or its driver needs more training.

    9. Warning Lights Off

    If your forklifts have warning lights (such as a blue light), but operators drive without them on? They're endangering co-workers.

    10. Missed Training

    If your records show an operator skipping a training session, they may think they don't need it. That kind of attitude causes accidents. Bad ones.

    Accidents: The Result You Don't Want

    All of these warning signs can lead to a workplace accident. Just one unsafe driver can collapse entire racks, seriously injure multiple people, or both. It can happen in seconds.

    Creative Safety Supply created this infographic showing the 10 most common forklift accidents. You can order it as a poster for a good safety reminder: 10 Common Forklift Accidents – Creative Safety Supply

    Forklift with Embedded Fork

    That's the wrong load…


    Unsafe Forklift Operation Can Happen at Any Moment. Stay Vigilant.

    One in every six workplace deaths involves a forklift. Let's all do what we can to bring that number down.

    When you hear or see these warning signs, take action. Identify the operator and caution them about safe forklift driving. Send them to safety training if you feel they need it (and make sure they go!).

    Until next month!

    Marshall Cromer, The Forklift Boss
    Cromer Material Handling 


    Cromer Deal of the Month


    che30Curious about the BYD electrics? We can demo one at your workplace!

    BYD is the forklift of the future. An electric that's totally green, longer-lasting, and much faster to charge.

    You'll only find BYDs at your local Cromer facility. We have a BYD truck in all 6 locations. All you have to do is request a demo, and we'll arrange for the demo on-site.

    For a good idea of how well a BYD forklift handles, check out this video Marshall Cromer/The Forklift Boss did with one:
    BYD Forklift Promo with the Forklift Boss (YouTube) 

    Ready for your on-site BYD demo? Call Cromer at 800.974.5438 and talk with your nearest location manager.

    *Please Note: Demo must be approved beforehand by Cromer General Manager.