The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), under the United States Department of Labor, was created in 1970 to assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women by setting and enforcing standards and by providing training, outreach, education and assistance. At TFTC, we are OSHA compliant and each of our trainers and classes follow OSHA standards.
On December 1, 1999, OSHA revised its forklift operator training regulations (29CFR 1910.178, paragraph L). The main purpose of this revision was to reduce high numbers fatalities and injuries which occur each year related to forklift operation. The change has two ongoing benefits to employers: the standard should prevent 11 deaths and over 9,422 injuries each year, and OSHA estimates a savings of $135 million per year in the form of reduced material cost, value of lost output, indirect cost of injuries, administrative cost of claims, damage to facility, equipment and product.
OSHA FORKLIFT SAFETY STATISTICS
OSHA estimates there are about 85 forklift fatalities per year, 34,900 serious injuries and 61,800 non-serious injuries.
The main cause of forklift fatalities is tipovers (42 percent). The other causes are crushed between vehicle and a surface (25 percent), crushed between two vehicles (11 percent), struck or run over by a forklift (10 percent), struck by falling material (8 percent) and fall from platform on the forks (4 percent).
Fatalities occur most likely in manufacturing facilities (42 percent), followed by construction (23.8 percent), wholesale trades (12.5 percent), transportation (11 percent), retail trade (9 percent) and mining (1.2 percent).
Studies show that most accidents could have been prevented by better training and training can also reduce the severity of an accident.