A collision between a heavy forklift and a pedestrian on your warehouse floor can have serious consequences — even low-speed collisions can result in severe injury. Forklift operators have fairly low visibility while they're driving, since it's difficult to see around the mast of the forklift, and warehouses are commonly cluttered with objects like pallets that hinder the operator's ability to see around them clearly. One way that you can help your forklift operators drive safely is to install warehouse pedestrian detection systems in your warehouse. To learn more about some of the available detection systems and how they can help make your warehouse safer for pedestrians, read on.
Blind Spot Signals
Doorways and pallet racks create tight corners that don't allow forklift operators to see pedestrians waiting there. Pedestrians entering into an intersection from a tight corner won't be seen by the operator until they're already in front of the forklift, which can result in the forklift colliding with them.
In order to provide additional warnings about blind spots to your forklift operators, you can install blind spot signals in all of your warehouse's tight corners. These devices use motion detectors to sense pedestrians walking or waiting in the corner. If a pedestrian is detected, the signal lights up and informs oncoming forklift operators that a pedestrian is located there. Once forklift operators are warned, they can slow down and carefully watch out for any pedestrians entering the intersection from their blind spot.
Busy intersections that have a large amount of foot traffic and forklift traffic are another dangerous area for pedestrians in your warehouse. You can help make them safer by installing pedestrian gates around all of your intersections. These gates prevent pedestrians from entering the intersection unless they open the gate by hitting a button.
Opening the gate causes a light connected to the gate to begin flashing, alerting forklift operators that there's a pedestrian that will be crossing the intersection shortly. Additionally, pedestrian gates can also be connected to RFID equipment located on the forklifts. If the gate detects that a forklift is nearby using its RFID sensor, then it will refuse to open for a pedestrian trying to enter the intersection.
Pedestrian Proximity Detectors
Proximity detectors alert forklift operators whenever a pedestrian comes within a few feet of the forklift. Pedestrians in your warehouse wear an RFID chip that can be sensed by RFID detectors installed on your forklifts. Whenever the RFID detector on the forklift senses a pedestrian nearby, it will activate a flashing alarm on the forklift in order to alert the operator. Once the operator is alerted, they can slow down and be extra cautious for a pedestrian that they may not be able to see. Some proximity detectors can also cause the forklift to brake automatically in order to avoid a potential collision when pedestrians are nearby.
Overall, warehouse pedestrian detection systems either prevent pedestrians from coming into contact with forklifts or alert the operator to their presence. Gates block pedestrians from entering intersections that forklifts are currently using, while proximity detectors and blind-spot signals warn forklift operators about the presence of pedestrians that they may not be able to see. For maximum protection, it's a good idea to use multiple warehouse pedestrian detection systems together.
If your workplace currently has no form of warehouse pedestrian detection, you should strongly consider installing safety measures, which will reduce the chance of collision between forklifts and pedestrians helps to keep everyone safe and productive at your warehouse.
Contact a company like Hit Not to learn more.