Forklift crash claims life

Friday, 21 July, 2006

A man has died in hospital 10 months after his forklift tipped and crushed him.

The incident occurred on 15 September 2005 at a freight distribution centre in Tullamarine, Victoria. The man, 28 at the time, was operating a forklift when it tipped on to its side after it hit a beam supporting a mezzanine floor.

The director of WorkSafe's Manufacturing, Logistics and Agriculture Division, Trevor Martin said the death follows a recent incident at Dandenong South when a forklift's load of glass fell from the machine to crush its 21-year-old operator.

He remains in intensive care at the Royal Melbourne Hospital.

"These incidents should prompt all employers and those using forklifts to closely review how and where they're used.

"Assessments of potential risks, training and supervision and consultation with the workforce are essential means of developing solutions to eliminate hazards.

"When there's a safety incident with a forklift, there is frequently little room for error. The consequences are frequently tragic."

WorkSafe Victoria recently issued forklift safety warnings following two other rollover incidents caused by unfamiliarity of pedal layouts.

To view the warnings and safety guidance material, visit the WorkSafe website: www.worksafe.vic.gov.au.

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