MLA Holdings

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Developing a traffic management plan

What is the problem?

Workplaces using forklifts without an adequate traffic management plan in place to ensure pedestrians and other powered mobile plant are separated from forklifts.

What are the risks?

Forklifts cause more workplace deaths and injuries than any other piece of equipment. More than half the people killed in forklift-related incidents in the last 10 years have been pedestrians. Even when forklifts are travelling at low speeds they can crush pedestrians.

What is a solution to the problem?

Firstly, identify the hazards and risks related to forklift use at your workplace and assess and control the risks of people and other powered mobile equipment coming into contact with those hazards. Hazards and risks must be controlled by eliminating the risks, so far as is reasonably practicable. Where it is not reasonably practicable to eliminate the risk, the risk must be controlled by reducing the risk so far as is reasonably practicable

The types of risk controls to consider include (but are not limited to):

  •  substituting a forklift with other suitable load shifting equipment
  •  identifying the most efficient route of travel
  •  traffic flows
  •  reducing the frequency of interaction with powered mobile plant
  •  licence and operator training

A traffic management plan may include a range of risk control measures, such as:

  •  pedestrian and forklift exclusion zones
  •  safety zones for truck drivers
  •  safety barriers
  •  floor markings
  •  containment fences
  •  speed limiting devices and signs

Involve health and safety representatives, forklift operators and other employees when putting the traffic management plan together. The risk controls should be reviewed regularly. All people at the workplace, including contractors and visitors, must be advised about the workplace’s traffic management plan (e.g. during workplace induction).

Information for this article was sourced from For further forklift safety information contact MLA Holdings on 131 652 or

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