A hydraulic liftgate is one of the most useful and flexible equipment on work trucks. They should be installed only by professionals. Safe liftgate operation is important to protect operators and bystanders from injury. Proper hydraulic liftgate troubleshooting should be followed if something goes wrong with the equipment. The guidelines below will help ensure your liftgate will serve you for many years to come:
Stay Beneath Maximum Load Limits
Manufacturers rate their liftgates for a maximum amount of lift capacity and you must always keep loads well-beneath the weight limit. Additionally, remember that lift capacity is based on more than just the actual component strength. Also, load limit calculations include assumptions that the lift was installed correctly and has been maintained properly.
Make Sure Operates Completed Proper Training
The majority of hydraulic liftgates are not complicated to use; however, operators must be well-versed in how to use them. Thus, you need to give training to those who will use the liftgates. The training needs to be done using approved materials and by following a comprehensive plan. Moreover, use decals and signs given by manufacturers because they contain vital user instructions and safety reminders.
Stay Cognizant Of Where your Feet and Hands Are
During liftgate operation, it is important to stay aware of your feet and hand placement. This will help you prevent pinching and crush injuries. Liftgates have moving parts to control the lift and cargo as well as to stow the gate if not in use. Many of their components like the radius arm can severely pinch fingers, feet, and hand if not used safely. Also, crushing injuries can happen if the lift platform is accidentally lowed on top of feet.
Do Not Ride on the Platform
Often, liftgates are more than capable of lifting a person’s weight; however, riding on the platform can lead to more hazards. For instance, slips and tripping injuries can happen if a rider is present. Thus, operators must avoid riding the platform. Rather, try to operate the liftgate while standing to one side and use other means to secure cargo without holding it in place.
Ensure the Vehicle and Load are Stable
When you use the liftgate, ensure the vehicle and load are stable at the forefront of what you are doing. Keep in mind that any sudden movement or unexpected shifts could cause a load to fall, resulting in injury to users or bystanders. Therefore, ensure the vehicle and load will not move accidentally.