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Vol 1 Issue #7 Aug 2009


Forklifts are an essential part of everyday life for many people in a warehouse area or any other area where heavy loads must be moved. 

You are not qualified to drive a forklift simply because you have a valid state driver’s license.  Employees who need to drive a forklift in their duties for KSU must be trained in both classroom theory and practical evaluation. 

Because of the narrow body of the truck, it can become unstable more easily than one might think and cause harm to the driver or those around him.  There are specific ways that loads should be carried on the forks and specific instructions for how to maneuver a hill with and without a load. 

Refresher training must be done every 3 years after the initial training.  There is a good awareness course online at

This course does not qualify anyone to drive a forklift, but is a good course to go through if you want a general awareness of the safety precautions and practices when driving a forklift.

Please feel free to contact EHS&RM with any questions or concerns.




  • Observe Speed Limits and Traffic Laws – Allow sufficient time to reach your destination without violating speed limits or traffic laws.

  • Drivers License - Employees who drive state or privately owned vehicles on state business must possess and carry on their person a current valid Operator's or CDL license and must present it upon request to any authorized person.

  • Insurance - Employees who operate their privately owned vehicles on state business shall carry proof of financial responsibility at all times that the vehicle is in operation and must present evidence of current insurance coverage upon request to any authorized person.  It is suggested that all employees driving on state business have a copy of the state’s insurance card and present that to the police in the event of an accident.

  • Seat Belts – Each driver and front seat passenger in any motor vehicle operated on a street or highway in this state is required by law to wear a properly adjusted and fastened seat belt.

  • Cargo - Drivers hauling any type of cargo should ensure that the cargo is properly secured, and that the height of the cargo is such that it shall safely pass under obstructions such as under/over passes along the intended route before placing the vehicle in motion.

  • Electronic Devices – The use, operation and manipulation of electronic devices such as cellular phones, Blackberries, or PDAs, by the driver while the vehicle is in motion is strongly discouraged.  Even with “hands free” equipment, conversing on the phone takes attention away from driving; making it less likely the driver will notice hazardous situations.  Employees are neither required nor expected to use electronic devices for work-related reasons while driving.

  • Backing – Whenever possible, park the vehicle where backing is not required.  Know what is beside and behind the vehicle before beginning to back.  Back slowly and check both sides as well as the rear while backing.  Continue to look to the rear until the vehicle has come to a complete stop.  

  • Intersections – When approaching and entering intersections be prepared to avoid crashes that other drivers may cause.  Take precautions to allow for the lack of skill or improper driving habits of other drivers.  Potentially dangerous acts include speeding, improper turn movements, and failure to yield the right of way.

  • Weather Related Hazards – Rain, snow, fog, sleet or icy pavement increase the hazards of driving.  Slow down and be especially alert when driving in adverse conditions.

  • Passing – When you pass another vehicle, look in all directions, check your blind spots, and use your signal.  As a general rule, only pass one vehicle at a time.

  • Front End Crashes – By maintaining a safe following distance at all times, the driver can prevent front-end collisions in spite of abrupt or unexpected stops of the vehicle ahead.  Observe the “two second rule” by following the vehicle ahead at a distance that spans at least two seconds.  The following distance should be increased when driving in adverse conditions.

  • Security – State vehicles should be locked whenever they are unoccupied.

  • Engines – The engine of a State vehicle should always be turned off before the driver exits the vehicle.



EHS&RM - General

Tel: 770-499-3321
Fax: 770-420-4363

Campus Emergency

Dial - 6666


Team-Up For Workplace Safety

When it comes to making lasting improvements to workplace safety; collaboration and innovative thinking are an excellent approach.

One example is the unified, multi-skilled team of various campus units who work together to solve workplace dilemmas. EHS&RM has xxx amount of online course offerings to create a safer workplace while providing hands-on experience for faculty and staff. Every web course is packed with up-to-the-minute video-enriched content that keep KSU employees informed about occupational safety issues that are essential.

Please contact Stephen Ndiritu, 678-797-2410 or email: for specific details.

Now that’s The Big Picture when it comes to online training!

See you around campus!

Gerald C. Donaldson, REM
Executive Director-EHS&RM


Work related Muscular Skeletal Disorders (MSDs)

MSD is an umbrella term for a number of injuries and disorders of the muscles, tendons, nerves, etc. caused or aggravated by various hazards or risk factors in the workplace or recreation environment.  Other terms used to refer MSD includes; repetitive strain injury (RSI), cumulative trauma disorder (CTD) or work-related musculoskeletal disorder (WMSD), among others.

Common MSD includes:

  • Back Pain

  • Muscle Strain

  • Tendonitis

  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

  • Rotator Cuff Syndrome

  • Tennis Elbow (epicondylitis)

  • Shoulder pain

What are the symptoms of an MSD?

  • Tightness, discomfort, stiffness, soreness or burning in the hands, wrists, fingers, forearms, or elbows.

  • Tingling, coldness, or numbness in the hands

  • Clumsiness or loss of strength and coordination in the hands

  • Pain that wakes you up at night

  • Feeling a need to massage your hands, wrists, and arms

  • Pain in the upper back, shoulders, or neck

What are the risk factors for WMSD?


  • Work that places the elbows above shoulder height or the hands behind the body

  • Tasks that call for frequent bending or twisting of the neck

  • Work requiring frequent or prolonged grasping and holding of objects, or frequent wrist movements

  • Work that requires frequent lifting of items from below knee height or above the shoulders

  • Work requiring frequent bending or twisting at the waist

  • Tasks that involve carrying , lifting, pushing, or pulling heavy or awkward loads

  • Spending long period with a body part held in any one position without movement

  • Psychosocial factors relating to work demands, such as control over work and effort-reward imbalance in the job

  How can I prevent MSDs?


  • When working at a desk, make sure your workstation is properly adjusted to suit your needs.

  • Find something in your day that occurs every hour or so and associate that with your time to stop and stretch. For example, when you receive a phone call or when you hear the news on the radio.

  • When working at a computer, occasionally look away from the screen and focus on a distant object to rest the eyes.

  • Perform simple stretching exercises to reduce muscular discomfort:

    • Conduct stretching exercises slowly and smoothly

    • Hold each stretch for approximately 15 to 30 seconds

    • Relax the muscles between stretches

    • A specific stretch produces better results when repeated at least two times.

  • Get out and go for a walk for some fresh air.

  • In a home office call a mental time out and decide whether or not to set personal boundaries between work and your personal life to maintain a healthy balance.

  • Each day, set aside five minutes for a mental health break.










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