Columbus Forklift Accident Attorneys
A forklift is a powered industrial truck used to lift and move materials. A forklift is a motorized vehicle, often found in factories, home improvement stores, and warehouses, with a pronged device in front used for lifting and carrying heavy loads. Forklift operators must receive proper training for safe operation and loading techniques, as well as ways to alert the workers around. When a forklift is not operated correctly and a person is injured, someone could be held liable.
When forklift drivers fail to follow necessary safety precautions, there is an increased risk of injury. Negligent forklift drivers are liable to: hit other people with the load or with the forklift itself, crushing someone by setting the load down before checking the area, dropping the load due to improper balance, or failing to warn others that there is a forklift being operated in the area. The injuries caused by forklifts are usually severe due to the size and weight of the machinery and their loads. Many forklift accidents, such as crushing and pinning injuries often result in permanent injuries or death.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, an estimated 100 workers suffer fatal injuries due to forklift accidents each year, 20,000 sustain serious injuries, and, according to OSHA, 96,785 people were injured in some way by forklift misuse just last year. In the United States, forklift overturns are the leading cause of forklift fatalities and account for 25% of all forklift deaths.
Manufacturing and construction see the highest amount of fatal forklift accidents—accounting for a whopping 63.8% (according to OSHA). However, 70% of all forklift accidents could have been avoided with proper training and procedures.
OSHA has specific regulations and rules that companies are expected to follow in order to minimize preventable injuries. OSHA safety standards outline the following procedures:
- Mounting and dismounting
- Mounting and dismounting a forklift can cause injury to the worker if s/he is not paying attention to the ground and/or the forklift, resulting in slips and falls.
- Starting and stopping
- Watching for blind spots and being continuously aware of what is around the forklift when starting or stopping is an often-overlooked task, yet is paramount to worker safety.
- Operating at speed
- Going too fast in a forklift can cause a tip over, and increases the risk of hitting other workers or vehicles.
- Turning, reversing, inclines
- To avoid losing a load or tipping over, drivers need to adhere to safety standards when maneuvering forklifts around turns, in reverse, or while on inclines.
- Large loads, poor lighting, and lack of mirrors can create undesirable circumstances for forklift drivers. In order to adhere to state and federal standards, the driver must be able to see and be seen in order to avoid preventable injury.
If you or a family member suffered an injury related to a forklift accident, Ohio law states that you have rights to recover damages for your injuries. The Columbus workplace accident attorneys at Rinehardt Law Firm have litigated workplace and forklift injuries, and we urge you to contact an attorney by calling (419) 529-2020 to review your rights. We understand that no one can predict when an accident like this may occur, and we are here to help you. We will look into every part of your case in order to get you the compensation that you deserve.
Rinehardt Law Firm is the answer to your personal injury. Our team of attorneys and case managers have represented clients in in Columbus and throughout central and north central Ohio for years. We treat every new client as if they were part of our family by providing clear communication, building a strong relationship, and using our experience to provide legal guidance that’s in their best interests. We offer free consultations with no obligation, so don’t hesitate to contact our team about your legal matter.