Whether being operated indoors or out, cold, wet and adverse weather has the potential to affect all pallet trucks used within the workplace. The extreme temperatures have implications for logistics equipment as well as floors and storage facilities. Strain reduces the reliability of key components of many trucks, such as batteries, tyres or any fluids used to aid their functionality, and any damage caused to these trucks can mean dipping into vital funds or budgets to provide replacements. It is essential to adequately and consistently maintain materials handling equipment in the winter months and after conditions such as the recent bouts of snowfall, or face potentially faulty equipment and a temporarily decreased level of productivity.
One of the first ways in which to stop the winter months from wreaking havoc on hand pallet trucks and automated lifting devices is to implement a thorough daily check routine. There may already be a regular check system in place, but making additions or altering them for the colder months can be beneficial. Checking the overall condition of the pump truck is paramount; this includes any lights, brakes, fluids or other controls that may affect the performance of the apparatus. These checks can help to catch any damage early so that it can be repaired accordingly. Check sheets are often available online or through the manufacturer.
Visibility is another important way to ensure trucks remain in good condition over winter. Whether it is supplying all employees with high-visibility garments or using extra internal and external lighting in winter in and around loading bays and nearby buildings, high visibility can go a long way to creating a measurably safer working environment. Darker mornings and evenings can often mean more hours working in limited visibility so taking measures to avoid working in dim lighting reduces crashes, mistakes and other accidental damage to hand pallet trucks, forklifts, high lift pallet trucks and other everyday equipment. Similarly, if delivery lorries are in operation in limited visibility, dark nights and winter mornings, it is important to verify that their reverse beepers and horns are in good working order before undertaking any sort of task.
Many workplaces make use of both inside and outside areas as part of their everyday working processes; in the wet winter months, this can cause trucks and employees to bring a lot of the wet weather indoors on their feet, clothes or on their wheels. Placing the appropriate mats at entrances and exits, and ensuring that any slippery or wet areas are covered with noticeable signage can prevent accidents which can harm employees, ruin cargo and damage trucks and other equipment.