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HANDLING AND CHANGING BATTERIES

SAFETY FIRST!

Whether it's your busy season or your slow season, make sure to keep adhering to all safety measures. When you lead by example you help to keep your work environment safe. If the following reminders seem like basic knowledge, then wonderful, you're right on track. 

Protective Eyeglasses, Headgear, and Footwear

The use of safety glasses and safety hats made of non-conducting material is suggested when batteries are being handled or serviced. Steel-toed shoes are also recommended. 

Removing a Battery

Removing batteries if a battery is to be removed from a truck, (1) open the electrical circuit of the truck (turn key or switch off), (2) set the brake or chock the wheels and (3) unplug the battery. The same procedure applies if the battery is to be charged in the truck. Never try to move a battery by pulling its cables. Batteries should be charged or changed only by personnel who are trained and authorized to perform these jobs. 

Wearing Jewelry

Personnel who work around batteries should not wear jewelry made of conductive material. Metal items can short circuit a battery and in the process become hot enough to cause a sever burn.

Protected Chain Hoists

For handling batteries, chain hoists should be equipped with a chain container or bucket to prevent a dangling chain from shorting the battery. If a container or bucket is not available, the battery may be covered with a nonconducting material such as plywood or plastic. An insulated battery- lifting beam uses an insulated lifting beam. It reduces the possibility of damaging the tray and shorting the cell connectors. 

Lifting Batteries

Steel trayed batteries have holes or eyes for lifting. The eyes used in conjunction with an insulated battery- lifting beam and an overhead hoist is the recommended way to lift a battery. If a battery is lifted with two chains attached to a hoist at a single, central point forming a triangle, the procedure is unsafe and can damage the steel tray. 

Battery as a Counterbalance

In most industrial trucks a battery is used as a counterbalance for a carried load. Before installing a new or different battery check the manufacturer of the truck for the recommended range of battery weight. The battery service weight is usually stamped into the steel tray near one of the lifting holes. A battery with the wrong weight can change the center of gravity of the truck and cause it to upset. 

These helpful reminders are brought to you by Clark Material Handling Co. 


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