August 2021 IVES Update e-Newsletter

Check out our latest news: Eight forklift safety hazards, reminder: New WorkSafe regulations coming to British Columbia, Meat Processor fined after forklift accident, product feature: Models, upcoming program calendar, what to do after an OHSA Citation, a question about managing certification records, interesting articles, and testimonials from our wonderful customers!

In this issue, we will be covering:
  • Feature Article: Eight forklift safety hazards managers must look for.
  • Reminder: New regulations take effect September 1 in British Columbia.
  • Meat processor fined US$66,000 following forklift crushing incident.
  • Product Feature: Models.
  • Upcoming Program Calendar.
  • You've Received an OSHA Citation - Now What?
  • Ask Bob: Our tech guru answers a question on training record retention.
  • A selection of interesting articles.
  • New testimonials from our wonderful clients.
But first, check out all the places we are delivering training this month...

Eight forklift safety hazards managers must look for.

A top priority for anyone managing forklift operations must be to uphold safety. But what does this look like day-to-day? Busy sites mean there is a lot to oversee, and it can be difficult to know where to begin - particularly if you haven't come from a background as a forklift operator.
It's vital that managers can spot bad practice and rectify it before it leads to an accident. Here are some of the most common examples to watch out for:
Poor observations
One of the main causes of serious workplace accidents and fatalities is being hit by a moving vehicle. Check that operators carry out their all-round observations properly, every time, before they move their truck or the load, to ensure that they are aware of pedestrians or obstructions.
Unsafe load transportation
Insecure loads, uneven weight distribution and overloading are all examples of so-called 'shortcuts' that can lead to lost loads and tip overs, with serious consequences. As well as watching out for these, managers should ensure that operators complete one maneuver at a time while carrying a load (i.e. turn, then lift; not turn and lift).
Inadequate pedestrian segregation
Pedestrians and forklifts must always remain a safe distance apart, especially in areas where they cannot be physically separated. Whether colleagues or visiting drivers, pedestrians should not be permitted to help with loading/unloading and should never try to steady a load. Putting robust, reinforced Safe Systems of Work in place will help to maintain safe working distances. Communicate these systems to everyone who may need to access an area where forklifts operate, however rarely this may be. This includes staff, contractors, visitors and delivery drivers.
Poor visibility when operating a truck
High loads can obscure the operators' view of their surroundings, increasing the risk of them colliding with other vehicles, pedestrians or racking. Make sure that operators are traveling with a clear view, so that they can stay alert to any surrounding risks. If their view is obscured by the load and they cannot travel in reverse, then they should use a banksman to guide them.
Not wearing seatbelts
In the UK, the HSE is clear in its guidance: "Where restraining systems are fitted, they should be used." Forklift operators may prefer to not wear seatbelts but the fact is they significantly reduce the consequences of an accident. If the truck was to become unstable and tip over, a seatbelt stops the operator from being thrown from the cab or trying to escape, which can lead to them being trapped under the truck. Adding seatbelts to company policies makes their use mandatory on site and managers should reinforce this through regular monitoring, refresher training, on-site signage and the like.
Misusing equipment or using the wrong equipment
Managers should look out for cases where operators are using unsuitable equipment; for example, lifting colleagues using makeshift cages, rather than purpose-built work platform attachments or MEWPs. Also dangerous is using the right equipment but in ways it was not designed to be used, i.e. using lift trucks to push loads, rather than lift them. Ensure that operators have access to the correct equipment for the task and are properly trained to use it, to protect themselves and their colleagues.
Tight deadlines and high demand can influence some operators to compromise on safety in an attempt to save time. But rushing comes at a high cost when it increases the risk of tip overs, collisions or lost loads. Check that operators are aware of speed limits on site and that they understand the need to stick to them at all times, regardless of any operational pressures.
Dismounting incorrectly
Forklift operators can become complacent during mounting/dismounting, simply due to the frequency that this is done every day, and may be tempted to jump from the cab. But this increases the risk of slips and falls, and also adds additional distance between them and their cab, potentially putting them into the path of another vehicle. Take a look at the three points of contact rule for the safest way to enter/exit a lift truck. These are just a few examples of the risks which your managers must target to help protect your team and your business. By regularly monitoring operations and making time for proper supervision, those overseeing forklift use can guard against unsafe practice, proactively rectifying any bad habits day-to-day. If your managers and supervisors need additional guidance, there are specialist training courses available to provide the skills they need to meet their responsibilities and resolve any issues before they lead to costly accidents.

Reminder: New regulations take effect September 1 in British Columbia.

Trainers and employers in British Columbia, Canada should keep in mind that new WorkSafeBC regulations affecting Part 16, Mobile Equipment go into effect on September 1, about two weeks from now. For more detailed information on this, check the July edition of the IVES Update e-Newsletter and keep an eye on your inbox for future bulletins as well.

Meat processor fined US$66,000 following forklift crushing incident.

A Victorian meat processor has been convicted and fined US$66,000 after a worker was hit by a forklift in 2019, according to a WorkSafe Victoria report.
Midfield Meat International pleaded guilty in the Warrnambool Magistrates’ Court for failing to ensure persons other than employees were not exposed to risks to their health and safety. The company was also ordered to pay costs of US$1460.
The court heard that a labor hire worker was hit by a reversing forklift as he was stacking cardboard sheets against a wall on 20 March 2019.
The worker’s legs were crushed between the forklift and a steel barrier. He was taken to hospital and suffered nerve damage to his lower legs.
A WorkSafe investigation found that although there was a traffic management plan in place, pedestrian workers regularly worked within the forklift operating zone despite the clear risk of collision.
WorkSafe Victoria Executive Director of Health and Safety Julie Nielsen said there was no excuse for failing to separate workers and mobile plant.
“This incident should serve as a wake-up call to this company and to others that it is simply unacceptable for pedestrians and mobile plant to mix,” Nielsen said.
“It is vital that employers have appropriate traffic management plans in place and enforce them including, if necessary, physical barriers such as bollards and chains to keep mobile plant and pedestrians at a safe distance.”
According to WorkSafe, employers using mobile plant should ensure:
  • A traffic management plan is in place for pedestrians and powered mobile plant and that it is reviewed and updated as appropriate.
  • Pedestrians are separated from moving machinery and that an effective communication system between operators, transport contractors and ground staff is in place.
  • Signage is in place and barriers are erected where appropriate.
  • Visibility issues are identified and controlled, particularly if lighting is poor.
  • Workers operating equipment have the appropriate high risk work licenses, as required.
  • Machinery and vehicles are regularly inspected and maintained by a suitably qualified person.
  • Employees and health and safety representatives are consulted about health and safety issues.

Product Feature: Models

We have an extensive line of die cast scale models available for forklifts, mobile elevating work platforms, loaders and excavators.
Each equipment model is made using heavy die cast with working components, realistic exterior and interior detailing. Available for CAT, Toyota, JLG, and Bobcat brands.
Also available, our CASTLE Multifunction Model to help demonstrate capacity, stability and leverage to your operators. These die cast training aids are a terrific visual for every trainer to use as a training aid in their operator class.
Click to browse or purchase our Models.

You've Received an OSHA Citation - Now What? The 4-Step Process Every Company Should Know.


The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) usually conducts around 32,000 inspections a year. For companies who are involved in an inspection and receive fines/citations, most are surprised by the hazards discovered and unsure of next steps to take. While avenues exist to contest findings, lower penalties, and delete citations, there are very specific steps to take and deadlines to hit in order for these options to remain available.
Are you prepared to respond to an OSHA citation?
Responding to an OSHA citation appropriately requires knowledge, manpower, and decisiveness. Follow the 4-step process below to ensure you remain compliant, protect your business, and minimize costs and fines.
STEP 1 | Correct the Hazard
Create an action plan and take steps to correct hazards as quickly and thoroughly as possible. Be sure to document every step you take (including emails, training records, relevant purchases, policy updates, etc.) so they may be presented later on as evidence of safety efforts. Appropriately correcting hazards within 24 hours may help your company to qualify for OSHA’s “quick fix” 15% reduction of penalties during the informal conference process.
If your company does not have a safety manager, consider reaching out to a safety expert who can guide you on how to quickly correct hazards as per the OSHA standard. These experts will have templates, training material, vendor recommendations, and techniques that will ultimately save you time and money.
STEP 2 | Post the Citation
Post the citation (or a copy of it) near the place where the violation occurred as directed by OSHA. The goal of this step is to ensure employees are aware of the hazard they may be exposed to. The violation must stay posted for three working days OR until the violation is abated, which ever is longer. Even if you choose to contest the violation, you must post it. Failure to post the citation can result in fines up to $13,653 per violation.
STEP 3 | Request an Informal Conference
As quickly as possible (and at least within 15 working days of receiving a citation), request an informal conference to review the hazards discovered. While this step isn’t mandatory, it is highly recommended. Benefits of an informal conference may include penalty reduction, extension of abatement dates, deletion of citations, and more. Willful violations (which have penalties as high as $136,532) are 10x more expensive than Serious violations; getting a citation reclassified can save your company considerably.
Additional ways to fight for penalty reductions include citing a good safety record, requesting an adjustment based upon the size of your company, proving a “good-faith” effort towards safe work practices, and more. Consider requesting help from a lawyer or safety expert during this negotiation process if you are unsure of how to present your best case.
STEP 4 | Decide: Agree or Contest?
If you agree to the citation, pay the proposed penalty and correct the condition by the date mandated in your citation. You must submit an Abatement Certification letter to the OSHA officer to document this hazard correction. If it is later discovered that you did not abate the hazard appropriately, you may receive an additional failure-to-abate violation (which comes with fines up to $13,653 per day).
If you disagree with the citation, you must contest it in writing to OSHA within 15 working days from the day you receive the citation (this letter is called a “Notice of Intent to Contest”). If you do not contest within this window, your citation will become a final order not subject to review by any court or agency. Once properly filed, the Notice of Intent to Contest suspends your legal obligation to pay penalties and make abatement efforts until the item contested has been resolved.
When faced with an OSHA citation, it is important that employers understand their rights and responsibilities. It is vital to act quickly, take steps to correct the hazard immediately, move forward decisively, and process paperwork in a timely manner during the 15-day working window after a citation is received. Missteps during this timeframe often result in higher fines and additional citations.

Ask Bob

Free technical support for all IVES Certified Trainers!
Hi Bob! We are updating our certification process to re-certify our operators every two years instead of the three required by regulations. Is there a standard of how long old records for current employees must be kept before purging them? Also, is there a standard of how long old records must be kept for former employees before purging them? Thanks so much!

Thanks for checking in with us.
Record retention:
1.   Current employees: you would keep everything, nothing gets purged.
2.   Non-employees: once they leave your employment, you are not required to keep anything at that point. Their next employer will be responsible for training. However, in my opinion, I would suggest keeping electronic copies of their training records and only purge out paper documents for at least a few years after they leave. “You just never know……….” is how I look at it.

Interesting Articles

  • Excavator topples, operator suffers minor injuries...more.
  • The hazards of aerial lift work...more.
  • VIDEO: 16-year-old girl gets hits by front end loader while crossing the street...more.
  • Which scissor lift is best suited for your job needs?...more.
  • Man driving stolen front end loader goes on rampage...more.
  • Boise fire rescue team saves man from excavator that fell into a 25-foot deep trench...more.

Client Testimonials

"Really appreciate an online re-cert program for us trainers, it is far more cost effective (less traveling cost) and more time efficient." Andrew, Practical Safety Management.
"This training was more than I expected and had my full attention. I appreciate the complete training that I received. I have a new found respect for forklift training and safety." Joseph, Recology.

"This was a great program! The trainer did an amazing job and went above and beyond to make sure we understood everything." Jonathan, Prospect Waterproofing.

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