Winter has come and gone, and we move on to another season that brings about safety concerns when operating your forklifts outdoors. Spring is filled with rain showers, as the old adage goes “April showers bring May Flowers”. We want to help make sure your forklift operators are safe and dry during the rainy season.
PROPER EQUIPMENT MATTERS
The proper equipment matters when working in inclement weather, not only for the forklift itself but for your operators as well. Proper rain gear is a must for that operating equipment outside, from ventilated rainproof gear to work boots with a solid tread. They’re ways to outfit your forklift to help keep the operator dry and the truck itself dry. If you don’t purchase your forklift with a solid cab enclosure, they’re types of detachable enclosures that you can put around the cab of the forklift.
VISIBILITY ON THE JOB SITE
It might sound obvious, but visibility is extremely important when operating your forklift around the yard in poor weather. Unlike the visibility in your car, which also has its blind spots, your Forklift has many more blind spots including that giant mast right in front of your face. If you’re a lumber yard or some other material that is housed outdoors, a forklift with an enclosed cab is what you’ll require. They come equipped with a front and rear windshield wiper to help with the visibility issue to an extent.
What’s the rush? When the weather is poor and operating conditions are less than ideal, slow down! Just like having less visibility than a car, your brakes on a forklift do not work as well as the brakes on your car. You have less room for error if you are going full speed ahead in rainy, wet conditions. Just like operating in snowy conditions, you want to check your tire treads on pneumatic tires. The more wear on the tire, the greater the chance you’ll have at less traction to keep you going forward in the rain.
NOR RAIN, SLEET, OR SNOW
There is a reason why Toyota is the most dependable forklift on the market today! An electric Toyota forklift will run in the rain no problem, and that’s because of the IPXX rating it has. IP means, International Protection code, and the XX is the level of protection. Electric Toyota operates at an IP54 rated, the five being the level of a solid material it can withstand and the four being the level of wet material it can withstand. Anything under four would denote that the truck might not be safe for outdoor use during wet conditions.