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Fork Lift Injury Lawsuit: Get the Right Lawyer

Sadly, forklift accidents are ubiquitous in the American workplace: over 20,000 workers in the United States suffer serious injury and death in forklift-related accidents each year.
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Collen Clark Published by Collen Clark

Free Fork Lift Injury Accident Case Evaluation: If you or a loved one has suffered a catastrophic injury or death as the result of the use of a forklift, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a lawsuit and we can help.

What’s the problem?

A forklift is often the most dangerous piece of equipment that can be found in a typical manufacturing facility, warehouse, grocery store, or construction site. Although heavy, its small size makes it prone to falling over on uneven surfaces, and its speed can contribute to collisions with people and property. Proper maintenance and operator safety training are essential to minimize forklift accidents.

Forklift Accident Statistics

The following is the percentage of forklift accidents broken down by category:

  • 26% of forklift accidents are caused by the forklift tipping over
  • 18% of forklift accidents involve employees or pedestrians being hit by forklifts
  • 14% of forklift accidents occur by the load falling off of the forklift
  • 14% of forklift accidents occur when forklifts are used to elevate people
  • 7% of forklift accidents occur due to forklifts accidentally being driven off loading docks, or due to workplace design which is hazardous for forklift use
  • 7% of forklift accidents occur due to improper maintenance of the forklift
  • 3% of forklift accidents occur because of loss of forklift control by the operator
  • 3% of forklift accidents occur because of improper use of forklift

The Occupational Safety & Hazard Association (OSHA) has a standard training and evaluation program that all forklift operators must complete before they can operate a forklift. If an employer chooses not to follow the OSHA guidelines, they can be found negligent. It is the employer’s responsibility to notify untrained and unlicensed employees that forklifts are off-limits.

Also Read: What Is the Most Common Type of Lift Truck Accident?

When Loading or Unloading Straight Trucks, Tractor Trailers, and Railway Cars with a Forklift

Preparing the vehicle being loaded or unloaded

Set the vehicle’s brakes and chock the wheels. Install fixed jacks to support a semi-trailer that is not coupled to a tractor to prevent it from upending. Post signs warning people not to move a vehicle. Check that the height of the vehicle’s entrance door clears the forklift height by a minimum of 2 inches. Make sure floors can support the combined weight of the forklift and the load.

Inspect the vehicle’s interior for trash, loose objects and obstructions, holes in the floor, and poor lighting. Install nonslip material in any area that could be a slipping hazard.

Ensure that docks and dockplates are clear of obstructions and not oily or wet.

Loading or unloading the vehicle

Stay clear of edges of docks, rail cars, or ramps. Have edges marked clearly.

Never tow or push railway cars or trucks with a forklift. Do not operate forklifts inside vehicles without ventilation. Make sure that the dockplate is adequately secured and can support the load. Drive carefully and slowly over the plate. Do not spin the wheels.

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The Personal Injury & Product Liability Litigation Group at Schmidt & Clark, LLP law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus exclusively on the representation of plaintiffs in forklift injury accident lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new cases in all 50 states.

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