Posted by Thelma Marshall, VP of Solutions, August 11, 2020

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Your business may be so focused on collecting data that it fails to fully leverage what the data is saying. Critical safety advice is hidden in those numbers, so it is important to use data for reasoning, discussion, and recalculation.

Sounds like a solid way to make safety improvements, right? But for many facilities, finding the time to digest intricate data, and then take proactive action fails to happen. Everyone is just too consumed with putting out fires to notice what is actually igniting the flames.

It becomes a vicious circle. If managers were dealing with less chaos, they would have more time to analyze and use data to identify safety issues and prevent potential problems (AKA chaos).

Data based proactive action is the first step in breaking the cycle. Remember that your data does not have to be complicated to prove valuable. Valuable safety data from your facility can be actually easy understand and share with your employees.

Communication and safety data

Once you have data insight, the next important step is getting proactive directive out there to your team. Think about it. Safety professionals base recommendations and decisions on data. But they don’t keep valuable warnings and insight to themselves.

Accumulating data is only half of the job. The next step is creating a feedback loop to determine and communication to your teams what the data reveals. The next step is devising a plan to make changes based on facts that will increase safety.

Identify large risks

Each year about 20,000 workers are injured in forklift accidents, and 25 percent of those accidents happen when a forklift overturns, often the result of speed.

A portion of forklift injuries could be avoided if warehouse speed limits were strictly enforced and safety checks were mandatory. This is challenging to achieve unless there is a warning system in place. Telematic software can provides solutions.

These include:

Telematic optical location allows speed limits to be set for each type of forklift in the warehouse. If speed is exceeded, an alarm sounds, and an email is sent to the driver’s supervisor. This infraction is recorded and included in the driver’s “operator report card”.

Required safety checklists can be inforced with telematics. Automated safety checklists provide documented proof that safety checks were conducted, and the software will even lock out vehicles from use if they fail inspection.  Everyone will get notified about which vehicles have been locked and why.

Operator report cards are a valuable data tool when trying to evaluate driver performance and safety over the course of a shift or an extended period. Managers can then quickly communicate risks that the data revealed and communicate with operators that break the rules, require more training, or need safety reminders. 

The faster managers act on important data insights the more impactful the feedback loop will be. This facilitates opportunity to create meaningful action. The right telematic software will support this loop of data communication and improve safety.

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