Forklift Trucks are used in industrial settings to lift and move heavy objects. Since its development in 1920 by transmission company: Clark, and by hoist company: Yale and Towne Manufacturing, they have become a vital piece of machinery in warehouses across the world.
Forklift Trucks are classified into different classes and lift codes:
- Class 1 include Electric Motor Riders. Their lift codes include: Number 4, which is a three-wheeled, sit-down, counterbalanced truck. Number 5, which is a cushioned, solid tire, sit-down, counterbalanced truck. And, Number 6, which is a pneumatic tire, sit-down, counterbalanced truck.
- Class 3 include Electric Motor Walkies. Their lift codes include: Number 2, which is a low-lift pallet truck. Number 5, which is a high reach lift type. And, Number 7, which is a high lift, counterbalanced truck.
- Class 4 include: Internal Combustion Engine Riders. Their lift codes include: Number 3, which is a cushioned, solid tire, sit-down, counterbalanced truck.
- Class 5 include: Internal Combustion Engine Riders. Their lift codes include: Number 4, which is a pneumatic tire, sit-down, counterbalanced truck.
- Class 6, which is Rough Terrain. Their lift codes include: Number 1 which is classified as all types.
Besides counterbalanced, there are speciality trucks which include:
- Articulated Counterbalance Trucks. These are Forklift Trucks which have front wheel steering and a very narrow aisle truck. These are able to offload trailers, as well as place and move loads into narrow aisle racks.
- Guided Very Narrow Aisle Trucks. These Forklifts are rail guided. Their lift heights are 40 feet to 98 feet, non-top tied or top tied respectively. These Forklift Trucks are only able to be used on floors with a high standard of flatness.
- Explosion Proof Trucks. These are for use in the operation of the movement of potentially explosive materials.
In the interest of saving man-power and the wages associated with it, some companies now employ the use of these. These trucks are often computer operated and are becoming more and more available by manufacturers around the world. While they save on man-power in terms of having someone to operate the machine by standing behind or sitting in it, there is still the wages of the computer operator to consider when deciding if Forklifts actually save a company man-power or wages at all.