Forklift driver suffers leg amputation
A Queensland forklift driver has allegedly had his leg amputated during an incident in September 2018.
According to a Workplace Health and Safety Queensland incident alert, the forklift operator’s lower leg was amputated when the forklift he was driving struck a bollard.
The incident alert said initial investigations suggest he was driving the forklift around a corner of a packing hall onto an exit ramp and his foot may have been outside of the manufacturer’s designated operating position. Investigations are continuing.
The alert also said that forklifts are one of the most hazardous workplace vehicles and are frequently found in warehouses, workshops and factories. People working with or around them often become complacent because they are quiet, in frequent use and part of the environment. However, incidents involving forklifts are usually serious and often fatal.
- forklifts are operated in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions
- operators hold a current high risk work licence to operate the forklift
- operators wear a seatbelt and do not place body parts outside of the forklift or reach through the mast while it is operating
- passengers are not carried on the forklift unless it is designed to carry more than one person and a designated passenger seat, seatbelt and foot rest is provided
- operators are properly trained and supervised on the specific traffic management plan for the workplace.
Whenever mobile plant such as a forklift is used in a workplace, a traffic management plan must be implemented to ensure the safety of drivers and pedestrians. Wherever possible, physical barriers such as bollards or railed walkways should be installed to separate pedestrians and forklifts.
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