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# The Stability Triangle of a Forklift

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## Vicki Phillips

on 1 November 2016

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#### Transcript of The Stability Triangle of a Forklift

Forklift Stability
This is a sit-down counterbalanced forklift
Forklift Safety
First rule of forklift safety
Never operate a forklift unless you are trained and authorized to do so.
Forklifts have the power to lift and move the heaviest objects…and the potential to do serious damage.
There are thousands of forklift-related accidents every year.

Forklift stability
To keep a forklift stable, you must know how much weight it can safely lift.
Capacity data is found on the fork-lift's nameplate:
Weight
Height

Capacity data
Capacity data is calculated using a load with a specific load center (usually 24 in.)
Unless every load has a load center that matches your truck’s rating, the actual capacity will be reduced.

Capacity data
Capacity may also be reduced if a load is:
Uneven
Unbalanced
Off-center
Attachments typically reduce capacity.

Center of gravity
The point within an object where all the weight is concentrated.
It’s in the center of a symmetrical load,
but off-center in an irregular load.

Forklift center of gravity
When a forklift is NOT carrying a load, you only need to consider the forklift’s own center of gravity, usually somewhere
near the middle of the unit.

Combined center of gravity
But, when you’re carrying or lifting a load, you have to consider the combined center of gravity of the forklift and the load.

Stability triangle
Imaginary line that runs along the forklift’s three-point suspension system.
Combined center of gravity has to stay within the stability triangle in order for the forklift to be stable.

Factors that affect stability
Weight distribution
Moving
Braking
Cornering
Lifting
Tilting
Lowering

Last words
Treat forklifts with the respect they deserve.
Know the capacity of your forklift.
Be vigilant about what’s going on around you.

This is a sit down counterbalanced forklift tipping over
Please do now... (write on the white boards in front of you)

In the video you just saw,
write a minimum of three things that the
operator did wrong to cause the forklift to tip over.

You will have 2 minutes
Turn to the person next to you and read what each of
you thought that the operator did wrong

You will have 2 minutes to have this discussion
Now share with the class what you thought
the operator did wrong that caused the
forklift to tip over

Lift a carton of copy paper as shown in the first diagram.
How do you feel?

Next-lift the carton of paper and hold it away from your
body as shown
in the second diagram.
Now how do you feel?

The way in which weight is distributed changes the amount of weight the lift truck will safely carry.
As you extend your arms when holding the box, the center of the box’s weight moves a greater distance from your body, so the box feels heavier and you will tend to fall forward.

The same idea of increasing the load center distance applies to a playground see-saw: the farther you sit from the middle, the more you increase the load center distance and the more force you put on that end. The same principle—increasing the load center distance—can cause a forklift to tipover.

Exit Slip