The Importance of a Pre Start Checklist
At LTS Forklifts we recommend that you do a daily pre-start or pre-shift inspection of forklifts. This way, operators know that the forklifts are ready to go to work and it identifies problems before they turn into costly repairs. LTS Forklifts have our own pre start checklist which we encourage our customers to use, or develop your own that suits your specific needs. For example, include an inspection of air filters and air cleaners if the forklift is being operated in dusty conditions.
Your lift truck or forklift operation and maintenance manual will have recommendations about what operators should check each day. Generally, you should look for
- Damage or faulty operation
- Fuel and coolant leaks
- Fully functional operating lights
Forklift and Lift Truck Visual Inspection
When conducting a walk around visual inspection of the forklift, the operator should:
- Inspect the tyres and rims for damage or wear – make sure the load backrest extension and tilt cylinder socket bolts are in place and the wheel nuts are tight.
- Clear the overhead guard of debris.
- Examine forks for cracks or bends – if cracks are present, the forks should be removed from service.
- Check fluid levels – forklifts with engines need the engine crankcase oil and engine coolant levels checked.
- Check fuel levels.
- Check hydraulic oil levels and fill if required.
- Electric models – check battery water level, remembering to fill it only if the battery has already been charged and cooled down.
Start the forklift and check the operations of:
Backup lights (if equipped)
Brake pedal and parking brake lever
Mast and lift chains
- Seat adjustment
Power source (engine or battery)
Once the pre-shift inspection is completed, have your operators sign and date the form, then give it to their supervisor. After looking it over to see if anything indicates the need for repair, supervisors should place the checklist in the forklift’s file. If you are ever audited you’ll be asked to present these checklists. Failure to produce this record could put you at risk for citations.
Maintaining a safe environment
Be sure to make it company policy for operators to report anything they find that is not in good working order. The faulty forklift should be tagged (many companies make it red) and taken out of service until repairs have been made. Remind operators that safety and productivity suffer if operators ignore their findings and try to get the forklift to work for ‘just one more shift’.
Phone LTS Forklifts on 1300 669 920, contact us via email or complete our forms.