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When should an operator inspect the forklift truck?

An operator should inspect the forklift truck every day before using or before each shift.


What does a daily inspection involve?

The operator should carry out a visual check ("circle" check) before starting the forklift. After completing the visual pre-start check, the operator should do an operational pre-use check.


What should an operator inspect during the visual pre-use check?

  • General condition and cleanliness.
  • Floor - clear of objects that could cause an accident.
  • Overhead - no obstructions.
  • Nearby objects to avoid as you drive away.
  • Fire extinguisher - present and charged.
  • Engine oil level, fuel level, radiator water level (LPG, gas and diesel forklifts).
  • Battery - fully charged; no exposed wires; plug connections not loose, worn or dirty; vent caps not clogged; electrolyte levels in cells is adequate; secured in place by holddowns or brackets.
  • Bolts, nuts, guards, chains, or hydraulic hose reels not damaged, missing or loose.
  • Wheels and tires - check for wear, damage, and air pressure, if pneumatic tires.
  • Forks - forks not bent; no cracks present; positioning latches in good working condition; carriage teeth not broken, chipped or worn.
  • Chain anchor pins - not worn, loose or bent.
  • Fluid leaks - no damp spots or drips.
  • Hoses - held securely; not loose, crimped, worn or rubbing.
  • Horn - working and loud enough to be heard in working environment; other warning devices operational.
  • Seatbelt and/or operator restraint device (if equipped) - belts and restraints work properly; no visible wear or damage; anchors, buckles, etc. function properly.
  • Overhead guard - no damaged areas.
Forklift Truck

What should an operator inspect during the operational pre-use check?

  • Foot Brake - pedal holds, unit stops smoothly.
  • Parking Brake - holds against slight acceleration.
  • Deadman Seat Brake - holds when operator rises from seat.
  • Clutch and Gearshift - shifts smoothly with no jumping or jerking.
  • Dash Control Panel - all lights and gauges are operational.
  • Steering - moves smoothly.
  • Lift Mechanism - operates smoothly (check by raising forks to maximum height then lowering forks completely).
  • Tilt Mechanism - moves smoothly, holds (check by tilting mast all the way forward and backward).
  • Cylinders and Hoses - not leaking after above checks.
  • Listen for any unusual sounds or noises.
  • Lights - headlights and warning lights are operational.

Report any problems identified in daily check to the supervisor immediately.

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Document last updated on June 7, 2013

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