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Fork Specifications and Why They Are Important to Safety

Welcome back to the Arrow blog! As a true dealer partner, we strive to add value to your daily operation, in addition to engineering quality products for your customers.

With National Safety Month right around the corner, we wanted to gear up by covering a topic that affects safety that you might not be thinking about: Fork Measurement.

For the sake of this blog, we will look at measurement in two different ways: Specifications and Wear.

Fork Capacity

Operators should know the technical specifications of their forks, specifically capacity. Fork capacity is important to safety, since it tells you how much weight your forks can hold. If a forklift operator does not know the capacity, they may overload the forks and cause damage to assets and/or injury to themselves and others. Capacity related accidents are all over this Most Common Forklift accidents list, which is unfortunate because many accidents are easy to avoid.

How to Find Your Specifications

If you are using the correct forks for your machine, the capacity on the machine’s data plate will be correct. Forks are usually ordered by length, so the length should not be hard to find, but you can also measure your forks to determine the length as well. While length does not impact capacity, it is important to know for irregular load situations that may require tools like fork extensions.

Fork Wear & Capacity

Forklift forks need to be in good condition to work safely and efficiently. According to Tri-Lift Industries, once forks are 10 percent worn, capacity decreases by 20 percent. That means a 1,000-pound reduction on a 5,000-pound capacity forklift! That is why it is so important for your forklift operator or technician to check all their equipment before using it. Our patented Fork Wear Indicator makes this a much easier task. The first step toward keeping people safe on the job site is knowing how much weight each piece of machinery can safely lift!

How to Measure Fork Wear?

If you’re using Arrow ITA forks, you might have our patented Fork Wear Indicator, which would be the fastest and easiest way to measure your fork wear.

Measuring fork wear is also pretty simple with a Fork Wear Test Caliper. Test calipers are a quick way to understand how worn your forks are and what that means for your capacity and maintaining safety. All the instructions for use are on the linked page.

Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more safety conversations from now through June!

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