Folks, let’s talk forklifts—those trusty workhorses of the warehouse world.
According to our pals at OSHA, regulation 1910.178(q)(7) states that all forklifts must be inspected at least daily before they’re put to work. If they’re on round-the-clock duty, they need a once-over after each shift. If you find any defects, they must be immediately reported and corrected.
Seems like a lot, right? But trust us: regular forklift inspections are worth every minute, and here’s why.
1. Avoid OSHA Penalties
First off, who wants to tangle with OSHA? Not us!
The last thing you need is a hefty fine because you didn’t follow the rules. Regular forklift inspections help you steer clear of penalties and stay on the straight and narrow.
Believe us, OSHA penalties aren’t something to scoff at. Serious violations can lead to a maximum penalty of $15,625 per violation. If you don’t do anything to fix those violations by the date OSHA sets, there’s a “failure to abate” fine of $15,625 per day.
Willful or repeated violations can bring you up to a maximum of $156,259 per violation.
So really, it’s a serious question: who wants to tangle with OSHA?
2. Ensure Operator Safety
OSHA rules are there for a reason—and keeping your forklift operators safe is always a win in our book.
When an employee gets injured on the job, it leads to a domino effect of bad news. You lose an employee, either because they quit or they’re too injured to keep working. Team morale takes a hit because everyone is spooked by the accident. Your business might have to pay worker’s comp and OSHA penalties.
A safe workplace is a productive workplace. Even if your team grumbles about how often they have to inspect those forklifts, don’t let up—it’s for their own good.
3. Extend Asset Lifespan
But wait, there’s more! Inspecting your forklifts like clockwork can extend their lifespans, helping you avoid costly repairs by catching any issues early.
Just like getting regular checkups at the doctor, preventive maintenance goes a long way in keeping your forklifts in tip-top shape. Regular forklift inspections can help you identify worn or damaged components before they become critical, saving you time and money in the long run.
4. Avoid Expensive Accidents
While we’re talking about expenses, let’s not forget the potential damage a malfunctioning forklift could do to your building or the pricey products it’s carrying. A single mishap can result in damaged goods, delays in delivery, and even harm to your company’s reputation.
Regular forklift inspections help ensure that your equipment is up to the task, protecting your bottom line and keeping your customers happy.
5. Improve Warehouse Efficiency
Aside from the hard financials of it, regular forklift inspections also contribute to overall warehouse efficiency.
Yes, you’ll have to dedicate some time during the busy workday to carrying out inspections. But when your forklifts are in good working order, they’re less likely to break down unexpectedly, causing delays and workflow disruptions.
This means your team can keep things moving smoothly so you meet deadlines and get products out the door without a hitch.
Forklift Inspection Best Practices
Now that we’ve got you on board with regular inspections, let’s talk about best practices.
First, know the rules—how often to inspect, what to check, and so on. Familiarize yourself with OSHA regulations and any additional guidelines specific to your industry or location. Knowledge is power, and understanding the requirements will help you create a solid forklift inspection plan.
Next, create and follow a trusty inspection checklist so you don’t miss anything. A comprehensive checklist should cover all the major components of the forklift, from the tires and brakes to the forks and mast. Be thorough and systematic, and don’t hesitate to consult your forklift’s owner’s manual for guidance on specific inspection points.
Don’t forget to keep records of your inspections. Proper documentation not only helps you stay compliant with OSHA regulations, but also helps track the maintenance history of your forklifts. This can be invaluable for scheduling future maintenance or identifying recurring issues.
And if you spot any potential issues during an inspection, don’t sweep them under the rug. Get them fixed before operating that forklift. A proactive approach can save you from… well, everything we covered in the first half of this blog.
Lift Up Your Team with Fullbay
So there you have it: the lowdown on forklift inspections and why they’re worth their weight in gold.
But before you head out, we’ve got one more trick up our sleeve: Fullbay.
Fullbay’s service order workflow can guide your techs through a thorough inspection each and every time, making sure no detail gets overlooked. Plus, we’ll keep track of details like part age and repair history, so you can stay on top of scheduling preventive maintenance.
With Fullbay in your corner, you can count on smooth sailing and safe forklifting all day, every day. Schedule a demo and check it out. In the meantime, happy lifting, friends!