Truck Accidents

What is the Most Common Type of Lift Truck Accident in 2023?

Posted by Trent Kelly on March 23, 2023
What is the Most Common Type of Lift Truck Accident in 2023?

A “lift truck” refers to a forklift or similar vehicle. Almost 100 people are injured in lift truck accidents on a daily basis. One out of every ten forklifts will cause a workplace accident in any given year. Even more shocking is that someone is killed just in the US every four days in a forklift accident. The other tragic piece of data here is that roughly one-third of forklift-related fatalities are other warehouse workers walking around the work area.

Most Common Forklift Accidents

OSHA recently reviewed numerous real forklift accidents. This real-life case study is sadly common and very much a preventable situation. In this case, a forklift tipped over because the driver made a sharp turn while going over the speed limit. The forklift in question did not have a seatbelt. When the forklift operator fell out of the seat, he was instantly pinned under the forklift’s roll cage. He died from the weight of the forklift crushing him. Roll-overs (or tip-overs) like these are the most common type of forklift accidents. However, these lift truck accidents are also common:

  • The forklift falling off the loading dock or liftgate
  • The forklift hitting another worker
  • The forklift being operated in a fully-enclosed space, causing C02 poisoning
  • The forklift crushing the driver or another worker
  • Workers on raised forklift forks falling off
  • The forklift operator driving with an obscured view
  • Loads falling off the forklift forks
  • The forklift experiencing a variety of different mechanical failures

The forklift driver not having the proper licensing and/or training is often a factor in many of these workplace accidents as well.

What Causes the Most Common Forklift Accidents

Let’s examine how the most common forklift accidents (roll-overs or tip-overs) occur. These accidents are, again, highly preventable and generally due to:

  • The forklift’s load being unbalanced
  • The forklift’s load being over the weight limit
  • The forklift operator driving with the forks loaded and elevated
  • The forklift going over surfaces that are not completely flat
  • The forklift’s forks being raised or lowered too fast
  • The forklift driver turning too fast and/or on a slope

Preventing Forklift Roll-over Accidents

While these tips can help prevent most forklift accidents, they are particularly useful in stopping tip-overs and roll-overs.

  • The forklift driver should keep the forks as low as possible when carrying a load. Forklifts are designed to have a low-to-the-ground load on the forks—this is how they are most stable. Only raise up the forks high when it is absolutely necessary (and not moving).
  • The forklift driver should slow down significantly when cornering and turning. The risk of a roll-over or tip-over increases greatly for a cornering forklift because the vehicle’s center of gravity moves out of the “stability zone” when this occurs.
  • A forklift should never be driven on a surface that isn’t completely level and flat. Be sure any cracks or rough surface edges in your warehouse or yard are evened out and clearly marked with yellow paint or tape.

Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer Right Away!

Our personal injury lawyers can help you if you’ve been injured in a forklift accident, either as a driver or pedestrian. Our experienced and dedicated attorneys are just a call or click away. Call 512-900-4657 today.

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