Prevent Common Health Risks to Forklift Operators

July 26, 2019 1:47 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Forklift operators often suffer from several common health risks associated with their work. The conditions of their job make it easy to succumb to these risks. Fortunately, there are steps that can be taken to prevent injuries and help forklift operators remain healthy. A major part of these steps is proper forklift training in Texas.

If you or your employees will be operating a forklift regularly, read on to learn about some of the common risks faced by forklift operators and use the tips provided to protect their health and safety.


Rough starts and stops while operating a forklift can cause whiplash injuries. These result in neck pain, dizziness, headaches, stiffness and difficulty concentrating.

To avoid these incidents, use forklift training to learn how to start and stop the equipment smoothly. While operating a forklift, adhere to speed limits for your setting. Work with caution and care, avoiding aggressive driving.

Knee Pain

Some forklifts require standing for long periods of time. The constant pressure on the knees and the effort to brace oneself against the machinery’s movements can cause knee strain that results in pain in this joint. Those who sit while operating a forklift may also experience knee pain due to twisting movements or cramped quarters.

To protect your knees from pain, use a knee brace, take a break from standing at least every hour and avoid jumping off of the forklift.

Shoulder Pain

Operating the controls of a forklift can lead to pain in the shoulders. Sitting in the machinery for long periods can also cause shoulder stiffness.

To reduce these effects, stretch regularly. It also helps to keep your elbows in while you drive the forklift. If your forklift doesn’t have an armrest, consider adding one, as this can protect your shoulders as well. Lastly, as you operate the controls, try to maintain a sideways handshake position with your arm, rather than a palm-down position.

Back and Neck Pain

If you’re experiencing pain in your neck and back, this is often due to the conditions present while operating a forklift. However, certain poor habits can exacerbate these issues. To minimize your neck and back pain, be sure to take regular breaks to stretch. Any time you return to your forklift, adjust the seat as needed to ensure it is properly situated for your build.

Poor posture is another common cause of back and neck pain. Avoid slumping in your seat. Also, keep your back pockets empty, as sitting unevenly puts a strain on your back. And remember to use the back rest. If you adhere to the operating procedures you learned during forklift training in Texas, you’ll likely maintain a healthier position on the forklift and reduce your pain.

We Have You Covered

Could you use additional information about forklift training in Texas? As your go-to equipment experts, V-Bar Equipment Company is here to help. Simply contact our team to find out more about forklifts and other equipment you may need. We offer sales, servicing and rentals for a variety of machinery. Reach out to our knowledgeable team today!

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