Forklifts are machinery which forklift drivers utilize to transport materials from one location to another in warehouse and manufacturing environments. The machine lifts pallets, also referred to as skids, which are loaded with items. The lift truck is designed with forks that insert into the rungs of the pallet. Sometimes, forklifts are also called Lift Trucks, Pallet Trucks, High/Low, Skid Trucks, Stacker-Trucks and Side Loaders.
The very first forklifts were advertised during the early part of the 1900s by companies like Yale & Towne Manufacturing and Clark. These days nearly all goods are shipped to warehouses and stores on pallets. Forklifts are usually found in manufacturing plants and warehouses, where they are depended upon to operate the business smoothly.
The following are some of the various kinds of pallet or skid lifts: Walkie low lift truck - with electrical motor; Rider low lift truck; Hand pallet truck; IC counterbalanced truck; Telescopic handler; Towing tractor; Sideloader; Slip Sheet machine; Walkie stacker; Rider stacker; Reach truck; Electric counterbalanced truck; Walkie Order Picking truck; Rider Order Picking truck - also called "Order Picker"; Articulated Very Narrow Aisle Counterbalanced trucks - also referred to as "Flexi Truck"; Truck Mounted Forklift / Sod Loader; Guided Very Narrow Aisle truck; 'Man Down' - for narrow aisles; and 'Man Riser' Combination Order Picker/ Stacker truck
There are counterbalanced forklift trucks available for specialized uses, like for example the articulated counterbalance truck. This hybrid is recommended for very narrow aisles because it can onload and offload in very tight spaces.
Capable if lifting as high as 12 meters are the Guided Vary Narrow Aisle Trucks. The "non top-tied" kind could lift up to 30 meters high. These kinds of trucks are available in man down and man-riser models. This equipment should be utilized only on floors that are even and flat.