Forklift in the Philippines: Everything You Need to Know
Construction works are practically endless nowadays. In the Philippines, a forklift is one of the equipment that you’ve probably seen frequent of times already—that is, in highways or urban areas.
This is hardly surprising, considering the breadth of what this machinery can do in myriads of projects and operations.
This article will tell you everything you need to know about the forklifts available in the Philippines.
What are Forklifts?
A forklift is a powered truck that is designed to carry, lift, or stack materials. It’s a heavy-duty vehicle equipped with forks or prongs at the front.
They can be powered either by 1) and electric battery, or 2) an internal combustion engine.
These trucks must only be operated by someone who has a license; that is, someone who is trained to control this equipment.
What is the History of the Forklift?
To have a better grasp of this equipment, it’s vital to know what came before the forklift became available in the Philippines and other countries.
As with tons of other inventions, the forklift was a product of necessity.
In 1917, the Clark Company fashioned a truck called the “Tructractor.” Its purpose was to move materials around their workplace, making things more seamless for the workers.
As time passed by, more and more people visited the factory. They witnessed the Tructractor in action and were quite amazed at what it could do. This led them to place orders from Clark for their own Tructractors.
A few years later, a hydraulic-powered lift was added to some trucks. This granted the Tructractors more lifting power.
Eventually, the forklift went through more developments, which allowed it to increase its production and market value.
In 1930, the standardized pallet was introduced. As more and more companies started incorporating forklifts into their projects, the amount of time that forklifts were being used also increased. Consequently, forklifts were tweaked to adapt to the changing needs of its users. They were soon constructed with a rechargeable battery that could last for at least 8 hours.
In the 1950s, the forklifts were tweaked once again. They were soon designed to lift loads at a much higher height than before. The height expansion brought with it new safety measures that need to be practiced.
Along the years, more and more safety precautions were proposed—precautions that ensure the welfare of the operator and the other workers.
What are the Uses of Forklift Trucks?
In the Philippines, forklift trucks aren’t just limited to construction purposes. These equipments are extremely versatile, which allows them to be employed in a variety of applications. Listed below are the primary uses of forklift in the Philippines.
- Construction. Construction, of course, tops the list. In this situation, they’re utilized to carry hefty materials or loads, both horizontally and vertically. Their ability to seamlessly lift heavy loads to a more elevated ground makes them ideal for constructing buildings.
They can also be used over bumpy terrains (as long as safety measures are practiced) and over long distances.
- Warehouses. Forklifts are also immensely essential in warehouse operations. They can be used to stack materials—both the small and the more massive ones—in places that cannot easily be accessed by humans.
Aside from carrying goods and materials, forklifts can also be used to transport large and hefty equipment.
- Ship Dockyards or Ports. Forklifts also play a crucial role in dockyards, where they are used to load and unload ships. They also carry cargo from the trucks to the storage areas to the ships.
- Transport. This might come as a surprise, but forklift trucks can be utilized to transport people. They’re used as a substitute tool to aerial lifts and cranes to hoist people to higher places, especially when these people need to perform a variety of tasks, such as:
- Inventory of stocks,
- Maintenance purposes, and
- Cleaning inaccessible areas.
When transporting people, however, there are very specific safety practices that you must always take into consideration.
- Recycling Yards. Forklifts can also be utilized to transport materials for recycling to their designated sorting bays. These recycling yards require heavy-duty trucks that can easily traverse rough surfaces, all while carrying substantial loads—all these conditions make the forklift the ideal vehicle to carry out these tasks.
What Are the Different Types of Forklift Trucks?
There are various forklifts available in the market; each of them caters to different needs. Listed below are some of the major types of forklifts, along with their respective uses.
- Industrial Reach Forklift Trucks. As the name suggests, these forklifts are prized for their extended lift reach.
- Industrial Counterbalance Forklifts. These are the most prevalent forklift trucks found in warehouses. Outdoors, they can only be used on smooth and even surfaces.
- Rough Terrain Forklifts. As you might have guessed, these forklift trucks are designed to travel in uneven terrains.
- Industrial Side Loader Forklifts. These forklifts are perfect for workspaces with narrow aisles.
- Telescopic Handler Forklifts. They are sometimes considered as small cranes instead of forklifts, mainly because of their extended reach and how versatile they can be.
- Pedestrian Operated Pallet Trucks. These are often used in warehouses for a more fuss-free transport of pallets.
What are the Parts of a Forklift?
If you are operating a forklift, then it’s essential that you know its common parts, as well as what they do. As with many other things, it’s pivotal that you arm yourself with the necessary knowledge regarding your trade. This will allow you to control the equipment more efficiently and more safely.
Listed below are some of the most common parts of a forklift.
- Cab. The cab is a crucial part of the forklift. It’s responsible for its mobility and contains the usual paraphernalia found in a vehicle, such as the steering wheel, mast controls, and brake and gas pedals. This is also where the safety devices and controls are located.
- Carriage. The carriage acts as a support structure of the entire equipment. It also mounts the forks to the mast.
- Mast. The mast is the one that’s responsible for lifting and lowering the load.
- Load Backrest. This is devised to prevent the load from falling toward the cab, and ultimately, the driver. Additionally, this also allows for safe loading and unloading of the cargo.
- Forks. Forks are long protrusions—like arms—attached to the carriage. They also help in supporting the load from the bottom.
- Overhead Guard. Overhead guard is a frame surrounding the forklift. It also prevents materials to fall onto the driver.
- Tires. Steer tires are situated at the back of the equipment. They’re designed to improve the truck’s maneuverability, especially when operators are lifting objects while driving in reverse.
On the other hand, drive tires are placed in front of the vehicle. They remain fixed, and do not turn around like the steer tires.
- Counterweight. This is located at the rear part of the forklift. As you might have guessed, this is for balancing the weight and for preventing the truck to topple forward when lifting hefty loads.
- Power Supply. Forklifts can be powered by four different supply types, namely: gas, diesel, propane, and electric battery.
- Tilt Cylinder. The tilt cylinder controls the forward and backward tilting of the mast, forks, and carriage.
- Hydraulic Lift Cylinder. Hydraulic lift cylinder is responsible for the vertical lifting (raising or lowering) of the mast, forks, and carriage.
What are Usual Dangers Involved When Working with Forklifts?
Accidents always happen—even in the most innocuous places. Hence, it’s hardly astonishing that mishaps are bound to occur on construction sites and the likes—places that are practically magnet to accidents, especially when insufficient safety measures are practiced.
And to make it worse, a forklift can be one of the deadliest equipment in the workplace. But don’t fret—all it takes is knowing and practicing the important safety tips.
Listed below are some of the most common dangers involved when working with forklifts in the Philippines, as well as how to avoid them.
- Forklift Turnovers. As the name suggests, this transpires when a forklift topples over. As mentioned earlier, there’s a counterweight that’s designed to prevent this unpleasant scenario from happening. However, a counterweight doesn’t ensure that you’ll be wholly accident-free. There are still other factors that might lead a forklift to turnover, such as:
- When a load isn’t balanced properly, and
- When the lift is positioned too high.
Fortunately, these accidents aren’t entirely inevitable. Here are some ways that can help prevent them from happening:
- Always wear seat belts.
- Make sure that the load is stable, and that it’s securely arranged on the forks.
- As much as possible, refrain from tilting the forks forward. Only do so when picking up or depositing some weight.
- Be careful in tilting the load backward. Be sure that it’s enough to keep the weight stabilized.
- Exercise caution when traversing inclines and slippery surfaces.
- Slow down when making turns.
- Refrain from raising lifting forks when the truck is moving.
- Nearby Workers Injured. Construction sites aren’t only replete with equipment and machineries—they’re also brimming with people.
There have already been cases reported when nearby workers are struck by the forklift.
Here are some ways to help prevent this unpleasant scenario:
- If you can, separate the workers from the forklift’s transport area.
- Constantly practice safe driving.
- Ensure that the workplace strictly adheres to safety requirements.
- Victims Crushed by Forklift. In some instances, the situation mentioned earlier takes on a grim turn. That is, the victims are struck and crushed by a forklift.
Here are ways to avert this:
- Make sure that only authorized passengers are allowed inside the cab. Furthermore, always have them wear seat belts.
- When navigating an unfamiliar route, inspect the area first for any hazards.
What Other Safety Precautions should You Practice When Operating Forklifts?
Aside from the cited safety hazards, here are additional precautionary measures that anyone who operates a forklift should keep in mind. Knowing these can literally save people’s lives or spare you from life-threatening accidents.
- Wear the proper personal protective clothing during operations. Some of these include a hard hat, protective footwear, and high visibility clothing. Other protective gear might be required, depending on your work environment or the nature of your project.
- Inspect the forklift beforehand. Make sure that it’s in top condition. If there are any defects, report them immediately to the supervisor.
- Ensure that your work area has no obstacles or anything that might serve as a hindrance when you’re already driving the truck.
- Move the truck with the forks lowered, but not close enough to the ground.
- Refrain from starting or stopping abruptly.
- Do not travel on a rough and bumpy surface.
- Don’t run over cables or pipes.
Rely Only on the Best Forklift in the Philippines for Your Needs
In the Philippines, forklifts are indispensable equipment not only in construction, but in a variety of other applications. Their versatility makes them very apt for a number of situations, such as in warehouse operations, in ship dockyards, and in recycling yards, among others.
Whether you plan to use a forklift for your construction needs or other purposes, or whether you intend to buy or rent a forklift, then it’s vital that you only procure a unit that will allow you to work efficiently, rapidly, and, of course, safely.
If you want to get only the best available forklift in the Philippines, then Multico is here to help you.
Multico Prime Power, Inc. is Asia’s Equipment Specialist. We have been in the market for more than four decades, which ensures that more than having superior and safe equipment, our team also possesses the sufficient expertise and experience to address your needs.
Additionally, we are appointed as the Exclusive Distributor of the Clark forklift trucks—the first ever forklifts to come out in the market.
Here at Multico, you’re guaranteed an access to forklifts that are robust and top-notch in quality. Our customer service is also impeccable, and our team is dedicated to responding to our customers promptly and exactly when they need it.
If you’re interested in checking out our products and services, including truck cranes in the Philippines and generator sets in the Philippines, then don’t hesitate to contact us now. Our team is excited to help you.