5 Important Truck Lift Gate Safety Tips for Beginners
In 2016, the US Department of Labor reported close to 2.9 million workplace injuries. Most of these injuries could have been prevented if work equipment were properly used.
As a truck lift beginner, it is important to know how to keep yourself safe while using a truck lift. Continue reading to learn some safety tips to follow in your workplace.
Truck Lift Gate Safety Tips
1. Learn About Your Specific Lift Gate
There many varieties of lift gates. Each comes with its own specific manual and its own set of hazards.
As a beginner, take the time to read the manual and learn the hazards associated with your particular lift. Most importantly:
- Locate all safety decals and follow the directions.
- Take note of the weight of your freight and your truck lift’s capacity.
If you are the one purchasing the lift gate, overbuy for capacity so you have a good margin.
2. Perform Checks Prior to Operating
Prior to operating your truck lift, check the equipment for any signs of damage. Do not use if there are any signs of abuse. If the lift gate does need maintenance, do not perform on your own. Take it to a garage to get it serviced.
Also, ensure your lift gate has proper clearance to operate and that the area is clear of obstacles.
3. What to Do While Operating
- It is important to only use the lift gate to lift or lower cargo from the truck. Do not use it as a personnel lift.
- Set the truck’s brakes and try to operate the lift gate on a level surface.
- To prevent the freight from tipping or rolling off, do not overload and secure heavy loads.
- If your cargo tips or rolls, always try to move out of the way safely. Never sacrifice yourself for freight.
- Consider the safety of others and alert bystanders to keep their distance while lowering the lift and unloading the freight.
- Do not drive with the lift gate down. Always stow the platform when not in use.
4. Stay Clear of Pinch Points
Keep body parts clear of all pinch points. A pinch point is anywhere a person could get caught within the moving parts of a machine. Hands and feet are particularly vulnerable during the lowering and raising of the lift gate.
Also, never enter the area beneath a raised lift to further prevent accidents.
5. Ask for Help If You Need It
As a beginner, you will have questions. Ask for assistance from well-trained co-workers or your employer. This goes for loading and unloading freight as well. Do not attempt to load or unload something beyond your ability.
Learn More About Lifts from Lange Lift
Taking the proper precautions while operating a truck lift gate will prevent accidents, injuries, and even fatalities. These tips can be applied when using other lift products as well.
Is your business in the market for a new lift or customized lift gate? Check us out at Lange Lift. We have been manufacturing high-quality lifts since 1934, and we promise exceptional functionality and longevity with all of our products.
5 Things to Consider When Buying a Lift Gate
Is it time to invest in a lift gate for your business? Don’t know where to start when making your choice?
Selecting a lift for your truck or vehicle can take some effort. Not just any option will do. You’ll want to take a few factors into consideration to make sure you choose a lift that can serve you well and grow along with your business.
Below are the five most important things to consider when buying a lift gate.
1. Size of Your Cargo Load
First of all, you need to decide on the size of load you will be carrying on your truck. You may need a light, medium, or heavy-duty lift depending on your weight needs.
Lange Lift, for example, can create lifts that are custom built to customer specifications and range from as little as 1,000 lbs. to as much as 5,000 lbs.
For medium-duty usage, tuck away lifts and rail gate lifts are both common and come with different advantages and disadvantages. Heavy-duty trucks, on the other hand, may work particularly well with a rail gate, a slider gate, or a cantilever gate.
2. Lift Gate Height
You also need to consider the height of your lift. The main thing to think about when it comes to height is whether you want a laden or unladen lift.
- A laden gate takes into consideration the low height of your truck bed when it has a full load. If your truck is filled to maximum capacity, the total height of the truck will sink down a bit. A laden gate will be made with full loads in mind.
- An unladen gate instead takes into consideration the height measurement for a truck bed without any cargo. Unladen works well even when the whole vehicle is sitting far off the ground.
3. Vehicle Compatibility
Vehicle compatibility matters when it comes to choosing a lift gate. You need to consider the floor measurements and different widths. A thin lift won’t work well with a wider vehicle and a wide lift won’t work with a thinner vehicle.
Make sure to consider what vehicle your lift will be for before purchasing. You’ll have different needs and specifications depending on whether your vehicle is a pickup truck, utility truck, cargo van, sprinter van, flatbed, or trailer.
4. Platform Materials
You also need to choose your platform style and material. In particular, one of the most important decisions to make is whether you want an aluminum or steel lift.
- Aluminum makes a good choice because it lasts longer. It can also lift more weight, so it is excellent for heavy-duty functions. However, it will cost more initially.
- Steel, on the other hand, will corrode easier and have a shorter lifespan. However, it will be cheaper initially, so it may make a good choice if you’re in the first year of launching your business.
5. Energy Supply
Finally, you need to think about the powering method of your lift. You can choose between using your truck’s battery to power your lift or use a separate battery supply.
Choosing the energy source is important and both choices will come with different advantages. Consider how often you will use your truck and your lift. If you use it only a few times a week, you will probably be better off operating the gate with your truck battery. Heavier usage that includes many trips a day may work best with a dedicated lift battery.
Final Thoughts on Buying a Lift Gate
Buying a lift for your vehicle can be an important investment for your business. By taking the time to consider your needs and choosing wisely, you’ll end up with a gate that serves your business well for a long time.
Ready to purchase a lift gate for your business? Contact us today to learn more about our custom-made lifts and to find out more about how we can help you.