If your materials handling operation involves the transport and lifting of extremely heavy objects on a regular basis (concrete pipes, granite slabs, unprocessed raw materials or single units of heavy equipment), then forklifts may be a long-standing and vital aspect of your operation. But if you’re a small and growing company, you may not yet have made the transition to large-scale handling. And if your warehouse or distribution center moves smaller objects or pallets carrying multiple units, you may be relying on old fashioned elbow grease to move items from one location to another.
Dolly trucks, overhead cranes, and human muscle can certainly drive your operation forward. And of course there are some places that forklifts can’t go (shelving units) and things they can’t do. Even the most narrow aisle forklift in the world can’t maneuver through small spaces like a person. But forklifts can add an element of safety, reliability and leverage that you simply can’t get from human workers alone.
Forklifts Mean Safer Backs and Necks
Counterbalance forklifts powered by refillable propane tanks can lift objects with speed and reliability that exceed human strength by factors of 10, and at a cost that may actually be lower than that of an overburdened worker. Owned and rented lift trucks may be easier to maintain and more cost effective than you realize, and worker lifting injuries — even if they’re rare — can be extremely expensive. If you haven’t conducted a cost comparison in a while, now may be a good time to take another look at the numbers.
Forklifts Accomplish More While Reducing Risk
Choose a forklift rental or purchase option that fits your budget and can provide the highest return on your investment. Review your lift truck options for safety features like adequate traffic signaling, ergonomic seating and controls, stability control, and adequate restraints.
Just as you invest in appropriate lifting equipment, you’ll need to invest in operation and safety training for your materials handling teams. Even the best lift trucks are only as safe as the person behind the controls. For more on how to add lift trucks to your operation and gain the employee training and certification you need, contact the materials handling and safe lifting experts at Liftow.