Forklift Blue Lights
The SAFE LITE is the industry leader and UL rated. If you need the best in light levels, warranty and quality, The SAFE LITE is the light for you.
“The most visible light in the industry”. The Big Blue is perfect if you need a huge spot on the floor than can’t be provided by other lights on the market.
If you’re looking for the best value for the price, the BEAST light takes the cake. Good light levels, lifetime warranty, and and AWESOME price.
Over the past few decades, there have been many methods of forklift warning devices and safety systems. These have included things like strobing lights, alarms, and backup cameras, along with many others. Still, all of these devices have left something to be desired. Even with all these technological advancements, there were still way too many workplace accidents happening at worksites across the country. That’s why the forklift blue spot light was invented.
Why Are Forklift Safety Lights Needed?
Even though safety devices like back up alarms and strobe lights were being added to forklifts from many manufacturers as standard issue equipment, a better solution was needed. Whatever value these devices had as safety systems was negated by the fact that they were so annoying to operators who watched the strobing lights and listened to the grating alarm all day, every day, that they were being intentionally disabled by many forklift drivers. Obviously, a safety precaution that doesn’t work properly is no good to anyone. What was needed in the industry was an obvious, yet unobtrusive warning system that would allow both inattentive pedestrians and other forklift operators to quickly identify not only that a forklift was headed in their direction, but also precisely where it was coming from and how fast it was moving. The forklift blue safety light solves all of these problems in one neat package. Blue forklift spot lights are a favorite of operators for their unobtrusiveness, pedestrians for their prominence and easiness to notice even while distracted, and management because they actually get results and increase the safety of the whole team.
How Do Forklift Spot Lights Work?
Forklift blue safety lights work by casting a bright blue light onto the ground in front of or behind the forklift while it is in operation. It’s a simple concept, but also a highly effective one. The lights allow forklift operators to see where other forklifts are operating, even around corners and in tight spaces with less than ideal visibility. Observing the light will tell the operator where the other driver is coming from, where they’re headed, how far away they are, and how fast they are going so that they have all the information that they need to make safe decisions. Blue lights are also great for pedestrians, because even if you are walking around the worksite unaware, looking down at a clipboard or cell phone, you will be able to see the bright blue light on the ground headed in your direction with plenty of time to become alert and move out of the way of the oncoming vehicle. We hear stories all the time about how blue safety lights have prevented injuries, collisions, and even fatalities on the jobsite. Everyone loves these lights from operators to pedestrians and even management! We managed to get the higher-ups of many companies on our side by producing a product that is unobtrusive, tolerable for operators, extremely effective in increasing forklift operational safety, and all at a very reasonable price point with easy installation. Some would call it a miracle!
Who Came Up With Blue Forklift Lights?
The concept of this safety light first came to prominence in the United States around 2013, but it had been reasonably popular in several other countries well before then. The original forklift blue safety spotlight as we know it today was developed by a forklift manufacturer and distributed in North America by just one company. These prototypes of sorts could cost upwards of $300 per light and that’s not including all the necessary wiring harnesses and mounting brackets! Even at this price, they were very popular among companies that could afford them, but still, we wanted to make sure that affordable and effective safety equipment was available to all. Buyer beware – since the rise in popularity of these lights, more and more cheap knockoffs are being produced in China and Taiwan and marketed as top brands. Make sure that you know what you are buying! Before buying any safety light, ensure that it meets the following criteria:
● Lifetime Warranty – the manufacturer should stand behind their product
● 1,300 lumen or greater wattage – this is the minimum wattage for the average facility
● UL Ratings 583 and 558
Proper Blue Safety Light Mounting and Installation
A lot of forklift operators are choosing to mount additional blue lights on the back of their equipment so that they can provide the same early warning system moving backwards as they do when going forwards. This is particularly effective because, of course, visibility is limited when operating in reverse, and many accidents occur while backing up. Although in a perfect world, operators will turn and look fully in the direction of travel before making any movements, realistically, this doesn’t always happen, or even when it does, it’s possible for the operator to fail to notice certain obstacles. To optimize safety, operators choosing to mount lights both on the front and back of their vehicles should choose one color of light for the front (say, blue) and one for the back (say, red) and be consistent across all equipment. This will allow everyone to easily distinguish which end of the forklift is heading toward them. It is not recommended to mount the lights outside the “running lines”, as they could be easily damaged, smashed, or even knocked off of the forklift during normal operations.
A common mistake made in the otherwise simple installation process of forklift blue lights comes when customers try to wire in the lights. When you are mounting two separate lights on a forklift- one for the rear and one for the front- they need to be wired properly so that only the relevant light comes on when the forklift is moving in either direction. Wiring them so that they are always on is not advisable and really only causes confusion in the workplace. An always-on light will effectively desensitize workers to the stimuli that is supposed to be keeping them safe, making them more likely to ignore it when it really counts. Forklift spotlights of any color should only be turned on when a hazard is present, such as when the forklift is in motion toward the direction the light points. This requires a little bit more skill when wiring the lights, but is more than worth it in the long run to protect the continued safety of your crew.
Adjusting Light Levels
To get the most out of your new forklift safety lights, you’ll want the light to shine on the ground as far in front of the forklift as possible while still producing a strong, bright spotlight on the floor. Our recommendation is to have the light pointed at the ground a minimum distance of 15 feet in front of the forklift. A distance any smaller than this simply does not give pedestrians adequate time to react to the warning and get out of the way of the oncoming hazard. You will also want to make sure that the distance of the beam is consistent on all your equipment so that pedestrians and other operators can always accurately predict how far away an oncoming forklift really is. Whatever distance you choose, make sure that the spot it leaves on the floor is very bright and noticeable.
Warranties on forklift safety spotlights are offered for a variety of time frames from just 6 months all the way up to a full lifetime warranty. The length and scope of the warranty offered by the manufacturer can probably tell you a lot about how they expect their product to fair. Obviously, the longer the better. Most warranties will offer replacements for faulty lights, but not for lights that have become damaged due to poor installation, inappropriate mounting positions, or as a result of a collision.
A UL rating is a great way to separate the wheat from the chaff in terms of quality blue lights for forklifts, as only the highest quality lights will be able to secure this prestigious rating. Customers who are interested in getting top quality products should only buy UL rated safety lights. If your facility has fire rated areas in any part of your workspace, you are required by law to purchase UL rated blue lights. Cheaper, unrated lights will not only put your company in a compromising legal situation, but they can also potentially start a fire and cause significant property damage, workplace injury, or even loss of life.
One thing to be aware of also when seeking a quality product is that that low advertised price may not be what you actually end up paying. In many cases, the cheaper forklift safety lights come with the light only- no wiring material, no mounting brackets. You would have to fabricate those yourself at an additional cost, when you could have bought a slightly more expensive, better quality light with all of those things already included. Think twice about taking your fleet into a forklift dealer to have them outfitted with the lights that you buy, as well. Many dealers drastically overcharge for such a simple procedure. Instead, have a dealer install only the first light while your maintenance team looks on and sees how it’s done, then they should be able to mount and install the rest of the lights in a matter of minutes.
Although the vast majority of forklift safety spot lights are blue in color, more and more workplaces across the country have been requesting red lights, so those are also gaining in popularity. Other colors may be available on the market in the future, but right now the technology doesn’t enable those colors to show up as brightly on the ground, making them less effective. We’d hate to sacrifice safety for fashion!
Types of Vehicles
The safety spotlight can be used on many more vehicles than just forklifts. In fact, practically any work equipment can be outfitted with a blue safety spotlight! Rider forklifts, order pickers, pallet jacks, stand up reach trucks, tuggers, tow tractors, golf carts, and many more vehicles can all be outfitted with safety lights if you see a need. They work well on small, quick equipment that moves relatively noiselessly and may otherwise be on the losing end of a collision with a forklift or other large equipment. The lights will make them more noticeable and keep them out of harm’s way- or more accurately, keep harm from coming to them! A clever new use for safety lights is having them mounted to crane hooks. When pointing down at the ground, the blue light can show where the otherwise hard to see crane hook is, is heading, and who should be getting out of its way before it touches down. You would need a very powerful light for this application, though, as most types of cranes used for these purposes are 20 to 50 feet off of the ground and operating in daylight conditions. Not just any old light will do the job properly.