Operating a front-end loader on a construction site might seem like an easy thing to do. However, just as with any piece of equipment, it is important to do everything possible to make sure you stay safe while in the machine. Here are some things to keep in mind.
Perform Daily Inspections
It is a good idea to examine the loader before you use it. Check for cracked welds on the joints and bucket that might result in dropped loads on the site. Look for signs of rust and corrosion. Make sure that the backup alarm is functioning properly and that the tires have enough air so that you don't have a blowout or flat while transporting a load.
You may not think you need to do this inspection every day, but doing so is a smart decision to make so that you know the loader is safe to operate.
Make Sure There Are Barricades Near Trenches
Because it might be difficult for you to see with a full load in the bucket, ensure that a barricade is set up to prevent you from advancing and falling into any trenches on the work site. Otherwise, it might not be easy for you to tell where a trench is. If you cannot have a barricade, ask for temporary construction fencing or orange cones to mark where the trench is.
Advance Backwards Down Hills
You might think that you can drive your loader the way that you drive a car down a hill, but remember that if you have a full load, applying the brakes might cause the loader to flip because the machine is so top heavy.
To stay safe, advance down any inclines backwards. When going up an incline, drive forward, and gravity will help the machine to remain stable.
Move Slowly and Keep the Load Low
You may be in a hurry to get from place to place, but doing so might cause you to drop some of the load or injure someone. Instead, be sure to keep the load as low to the ground as you can and to move at a slow, deliberate pace.
Use the tips laid out in this article to ensure that you do everything you can to remain safe when operating a front-end loader. Be sure to read any materials available from the manufacturer to be confident you have the information you need to operate the loader properly. If your company is looking to purchase a loader, visit Scott Equipment.