Pallet jacks are used to lift loads that would usually demand the effort of multiple workmen for being lifted. The use of pallet jacks not only saves labour costs and time, but it is also a safe alternative for workers who need to lift hazardous materials. Surprisingly, many employers allow pallet jacks to be operated by untrained and unsupervised workmen, which make workers and onlookers vulnerable to injuries. When a worker in your facility operates a pallet jack, he should make sure that he uses protective gear, such as gloves, and steel-capped boots. Additionally, the use of safety eyewear is recommended if a job involves the transportation of hazardous chemicals.

There are certain precautions that you should adopt to ensure safe equipment use. It is not a good idea to operate the machine beyond its lifting capacity or to defy lifting instructions during loading and unloading operations. Ensure that you move the load slowly so that you can avoid incidents if your environment changes. Understand the location of the pinch points so that you can save your hands from getting injured. Avoid placing your feet under the equipment and make sure that you avoid pulling the load.

You should keep a safety plan in place to ensure safe equipment use. Before using, conduct a quick inspection to check if the pallet jack is in proper working condition. Examine the controls of the pallet jack to check if they work and make sure that you know how to handle them. The wheels of a healthy, operable pallet jack will have no cracks and you should carefully inspect the signs of wear and tear.  This will reduce the probability of incidents that may result due to poor handling.

Before you start moving the load, you should ensure that the path that the load will cover is free from obstacles. If you are moving a large load that prevents you from seeing the road ahead, you may request a co-worker to help you. Equipment maintenance impacts equipment performance to a considerable extent. Keep pallets in dry places and check if they have suffered any structural damage due to leakage that might have resulted during the transportation of a hazardous chemical. 

Tags: Safety