Environmental Problems About Electric Lift Truck Batteries
The electric forklift is usually considered more safe and stable compared to diesel and gas powered IC engines. Both gas and diesel engines pose a fire risk and emit harmful exhaust toxins. The electric forklift is not without is hazards though. They have rechargeable batteries as their source of power, and batteries could present risks to personal safety as well as to the natural world. There are risks connected with the disposal, storage, use and manufacture of rechargeable batteries for forklifts.
The forklift battery consists of lead plates being placed in a solution of sulfuric acid, which are known as lead-acid rechargeable batteries. Lead is toxic that, when utilized in manufacturing processes, poses hazards to water quality due to runoff and drainage. When lead enters a water system it could lead to various kinds of health issues to people and could even be fatal. The sulfuric acid utilized in lift truck batteries is very harmful to skin and can result in severe burns. Sulfuric acid also produces noxious fumes which could cause damage to the natural world and to human beings.
Normal Use and Storage
When recharging, the lead-acid battery can produce hydrogen gas as a chemical byproduct. When recharging batteries for any kinds of vehicle or a lift truck, flames, heat, smoking and sparks should be kept well away from the recharging place. The combustible hydrogen could cause an explosion if ignited by heat or flame.
If it come into contact with bare skin, sulfuric acid in the batteries could cause chemical burns. This is not an issue during normal use of the battery, but if a battery is damaged or punctured, the acid could leak or spray, potentially burning anybody who is nearby.
Incorrect disposal of lead-acid batteries must always be avoided. These batteries must be recycled correctly or reused in new batteries so that the sulfuric acid can either be recycled or neutralized. To be able to avoid the serious environmental consequences of wrong disposal, all lead-acid batteries purchased or sold in the United States include a "core charge" which would only be returned if the used battery is turned in.