Forklifts are necessary for loading and unloading several items throughout the day in a warehouse most of which are very heavy. All mechanical parts can malfunction over a period of time, and forklift accessories are no exception. It may not even be a malfunction, but simply gradual wear and tear over time. Some of the accessories that may require periodic replacement are drum handlers, extensions, and crane baskets.
Accessories fitted in forklifts endeavor to make it easier to lift objects. As replacements and repairs help increase productivity during the operation, one must pick a reputed company to buy forklift accessories. Parts contain their individual warranties, and this company must sell parts with the requisite warranties in place.
Main uses of forklifts
A forklift is recognized as a powered industrial truck meant to lift and carry heavy materials over short distances. While some of them need their operators to stand, there are others in which they can sit as they drive them. This vehicle is perfectly suited in a warehouse for the following purposes:
- Transporting goods from one area of the warehouse to another
- Raising personnel above the ground for work purposes
- Loading or unloading goods from and into transport trailers, containers, and train cars
- Loading or unloading ships present at a dockyard
- Lifting and then placing loads on floors of any large building
- Transporting recycling materials and taking them to their sorting bays
Main parts of forklift trucks
Accessories are many in number, but the ones mentioned below are the main components necessary to move, lift and store heavier goods in a highly efficient manner:
- Power source– The forklift contains an inbuilt combustion engine, and its power source can be fueled with LPG, Natural Gas, CNG, and diesel. Electric powered forklifts are also used in some places, and they receive power from lead-acid batteries.
- Counterweight– The job of this component to counter balance the weight lifted by the forklift, preventing the machine from toppling over. It is made using cast iron and is attached to the rear of the vehicle.
- Carriage– It is the base of the forklift, being attached to the mast rails for easy motion
- Mast– Its role is to lower and lift the load. Interlocking rails are also present for horizontal controls. It is possible to install the mast with rollers.
- Truck frame– The truck frame is present at the forklift’s base, and is able to hold important parts of the vehicle together. These parts include the counterweight, wheel, and mast.
There are a large number of workers present in every recycling facility, dockyard, or warehouse. Employers must be in a position to protect the staff from various hazards in these work areas. One method is to ensure that red and blue lights are present on every forklift, and are operational too. This warns pedestrians about danger from oncoming vehicles.
Other than the above, the forklift must have a safety bar at the rear, so that there are no injuries to the operator in case there is a racking collision. To keep operators in touch with the latest rules and technologies among forklifts, regular forklift training needs to be held at relevant organizations.
For ensuring maximum safety, operators must be given access to the following types of protective clothing:
- Tight fitting clothes- Loose sleeves, trouser legs, and other clothes can get easily trapped in the forklift, which could lead to major injuries
- Safety shoes- It is the easiest way to avoid disabling accidents in which one may not get grip on the floor, or on any other surface
- Hard hats- They protect the head in any kind of warehousing facility, development facility, or construction environment
- Hi-Vis jackets- These are important not just for the operators but for everyone at the construction site
Forklift operators need to be aware of their environment as well as possible. The machine must be operated by adhering to the speed limit, safety guidelines, and any other safety rules. Some of the rules included:
- Maintaining a speed limit of 10 miles per hour
- Driving only on designated paths
- Knowing where the edges of bays, docks, and ramps are present
- Checking signs for doorways, low ceilings, exclusion zones, and loading bays
Owning a forklift- is it better than renting?
A lot of construction companies look to hire forklifts to save themselves from maintenance costs, but it would not be a great idea if most company operations involve them. One of the main reasons it should be purchased is and not rented is familiarity. Operators can be trained more easily on one machine instead of many. Of course, one can also imagine the handling risks posed when a new machine is taken on rent every few months. For any company, every forklift is an asset on its balance sheet.