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Focus on Forklift Maintenance and Training

The forklift violations most often cited by OSHA are easily avoided.

(Boonton, NJ, October 3, 2014) — As safety violations go, the forklift problems at Exel Inc.’s automotive parts distribution center in Toledo, OH, were mild.

No one was injured in the incident that caused inspectors from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to visit earlier this year.

Still, OSHA proposed fines totaling $52,500.

The hefty penalties underscore how seriously OSHA takes forklift maintenance and training, and they highlight the downside of ignoring the basic maintenance guidelines and training rules that federal regulators enforce.

“Two maintenance violations and three training violations make up probably 90 percent of what OSHA cites on forklifts,” says Dave Hoover of Forklift Training Systems. “But companies continue to make the same mistakes over and over again.”

What are the big five:

1. Failing to inspect

2. Allowing broken-down forklifts to keep operating

3. Failing to require operator certification

4. Dropping the ball on re-evaluation

5. Ignoring training after an accident.

More on OSHA inspections, tips for the holiday rush, solar rooftops, and preparing the DC for winter appear in the October issue of Distribution Center Management.

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