If you take the training to become a forklift operator, you may end up using your skills in a variety of situations. In rare cases, you may even need to lift an extra large load with two forklifts. This can be a tricky maneuver. Here are some tips to help:
1. Use two forklift operators and a director
If you are trying to lift a large load with two forklifts, you obviously need two operators, but for safety, you also need someone observing from the outside. Ideally, all of you should have headsets and mics so you can communicate with each other.
2. Only attempt lifting objects that have a solid base or channels for tines
Lifting an awkward shaped object with two forklifts can be really difficult as the object is likely to have a different weight distribution on each of the forklifts, and that can cause them to become unbalanced. If possible, only try to lift objects with wide flat bases. In some cases, however, you may have able to run two pieces of heavy channeling under the object. If the channeling opens to the sides, the forklift operators can push their tines in through the channels.
3. Consider chaining the load to the larger forklift
If you are using two forklifts and one of them can hold a larger capacity, consider chaining part of the load to the larger forklift. Have that forklift hold most of the load and have the smaller machine oriented so that its tines are partially under the tines of the larger forklift. The smaller forklift should be supporting the larger one, preventing it from tipping over.
4. Let the truck drive away
Once the load is on both of the forklifts, let the truck move slowly out from under it. Then, the forklift operators should communicate to each other, and they should simultaneously lower their tines to set the load on the ground. Unfortunately, moving the load can be very difficult. This technique really only works to unload a larger object.
5. Explore other alternatives
In most cases, it's better to avoid using two forklifts to move a heavy load. Instead, you may need a larger forklift, a crane or a truck with a tilt bed. Luckily, you can learn all about forklifts, how to use them safely and how to assess these types of situations when you take a forklift operator training course. Call a training centre for more information.