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This Double Forklift Technique Is Definitely Not OSHA Approved

Almost there... Almost there... Uh-oh.

Listen, we understand that sometimes you have to improvise to get the job done. No matter the industry, workers run into situations where the ladder is just a little too short, or the bolt is just a little too small, or the tool just isn’t right. America was built on that kind of forced ingenuity. But double-stacking forklifts to deliver a giant piece of machinery to a second floor opening in an exterior wall? That’s a bridge too far for us.

The video opens with the bad decision-making already in progress. The crew has managed to get the load onto the forks of a small one-man lift, which itself is parked on the forks of a bigger lift, and raise the precarious contraption about halfway up. As the driver on the ground gently eases forward—they have about ten feet to cover, including the distance needed to get the load through the opening—the house of cards tips dangerously forward before rocking back to an upright position.

Perhaps realizing how he’s completely ruined the forklift’s balance by moving the center of gravity so far forward, the driver tilts the bottom lift back as far as it can go. Meanwhile, the man in the little lift (yes, it’s still manned) raises his forks to bring the load even with the opening in the wall. And for a brief moment, it looks like it’s actually going to work. The driver on the ground crawls carefully towards the wall, and with just inches to go, the middle lift tries to raise his forks one last time to clear the floor of the second story. And that, friends, is when it all comes crashing down.

We watched the whole video expecting for the middle lift to fall off, or for the whole thing to tip over, but in the end the load itself slips off the side and crashes down to the sidewalk. And it wasn’t even a balance problem—from the crack we can hear and the way the top lift appears to slip, it looks like they overtaxed the little machine and caused a mechanical failure.

But still, this is a good reminder that just because something seems possible doesn’t mean it’s a solid plan.