Five ways to prevent a forklift tip-over

Just the thought of your forklift tipping over during operation can be frightening. Forklifts are large and heavy machines that can have severe consequences if they were to tip. 

Not only would such an accident cause serious damage to your forklift, costing your business thousands of dollars in repairs, it could also place yourself or any nearby pedestrians at risk of serious injury or death. 

Fortunately, there are actions you can take to avoid this from happening. Here are five ways to prevent a forklift tip-over. 

1. Refresh your safety knowledge 

Taking the time to understand the safety precautions associated with forklift operations will help reduce your risk of an accident. By completing adequate forklift safety training, you can lower the risk of serious injury if an accident were to occur.

Ensure only certified operators with an appropriate forklift license operate the machinery at any given time. Preventative measures such as wearing a seatbelt can save lives when unexpected situations occur. Seatbelts ensure the operator remains in their seat during a fall, reducing the risk of serious injury.

2. Take caution when operating on inclines 

When operating your forklift on an incline, it’s critical that you take additional precautions. Avoid turning if you’re transporting loads while travelling on an incline. Turning can cause a shift in the centre of gravity, resulting in the forklift tipping sideways.

When operating the forklift on an incline, you must keep the load on the uphill side to ensure the forklift has weight on the wheels to steer. Failing to do so can cause the operator to lose control and the forklift to tip.

3. Avoid sudden movements 

Sudden movements can shift a forklift’s centre of gravity and cause it to become unstable. If travelling at high speeds, sudden braking is likely to occur, causing the operator to lose control. 

Monitoring your speed and your surroundings at all times can reduce the need to brake suddenly. Ensure you resist the temptation of speeding to complete a task quickly and follow the speed limit to prevent your forklift from tipping over.

4. Focus on your direction of travel to avoid a tip-over

Focussing on the direction of travel will ensure the driver has a clear vision of where they are heading. A driver needs to be alert of their surroundings at all times to prevent accidents that can result in the forklift tipping over. 

5. Know your load capacity 

Before operating a forklift, it is critical that you understand its maximum load capacity. At Hyworth Forklifts, we have a range of machines that accept different load capacities, depending on your requirements. Always use loads within the recommended weight to ensure they are well balanced on the forks. Exceeding the maximum load capacity will leave your forklift at greater risk of tipping. 

In addition, transporting a load that is loose or unsecured can cause a forklift to tip over. Check that your load is stable to avoid your forklift from tipping. 

What to do if your forklift tips? 

  • Stay in your seat; 
  • Brace yourself with your feet; 
  • Grip the wheel securely; 
  • Stay calm and call for help. 

If you’re looking for a reliable team of forklift experts with extensive knowledge in forklift safety and operation, call us on 1300 499 678