Load lifting equipment became unbalanced and fatally struck a worker.
Authorities recently examined how a forklift mast weighing up to 2.7 tonnes topped and fell onto a technician performing maintenance on 28 April 2023. The employee did not survive.
“Preliminary investigations revealed that the locking pins of the mast were removed without first securing the mast,” a Workplace Safety and Health Council safety bulletin said.
“The forklift’s mast fell on him. The technician was pronounced dead at the scene by attending paramedics.”
Investigators made the following recommendations:
- ensure worker safety and undertake an assessment of their safety measures
- deploy only trained, qualified and authorised forklift technicians to assemble, disassemble, repair or maintain equipment
- provide a safe work procedure (SWP) for mast disassembly that includes steps to control the risk of forklift masts falling onto workers
- properly secure or hold the mast in place to prevent toppling
- mark out the mast fall zone, and ensure no one is in the fall zone before mast locking pins are removed
- provide on-site supervision to ensure workers are aware of hazards and that SWPs are followed closely.