Australian Forklift Training , an official training company in Australia, offers practical advice and assistance in acquiring forklift licences.
Australian Forklift Training has provided safety tips on using a forklift on a roadway, footpath or areas open to the public.
If a forklift has to be operated in areas that are open to the public such as roadways and footpaths (generally, anywhere beyond front driveway or the driveway of a complex) then there are two vital things that are important.
To go on any roadway, the forklift used will either have to be road registered (like a car) or the area will need to have barriers with appropriate safety signs or alternatively a flag person should be present at all times.
If a forklift needed to be driven on the road, be it from one location to another or simply across the street, it should be road registered.
For unloading trucks or vehicles on the road or footpath, the area should be barricaded and sign posted to warn people not to enter.
A flag person is needed whenever the forklift will disrupt or interfere with traffic or where the public cannot be kept out and pedestrian traffic has to be directed.
Taking a forklift into an area open to the public without these precautions in place is at the risk of being fined for having an unregistered vehicle on the road (the same as having an unregistered car on the road). It can also play havoc with insurance coverage when an accident occurs.
Companies who use forklifts in areas open to the public need to develop a traffic management plan to ensure insurance cover is applicable, should an accident occur.
Assess how often the forklifts are used in public areas, how busy the areas are, what sort of traffic is interrupted, whether or not RTA or other approval is needed and develop a traffic plan to suit.