We often hear people ask, “do I need forklift training?” OSHA states that all employees must receive safety training prior to operating any heavy machinery, forklifts included. However, general safety training is not enough. Make sure that you receive training on your specific make and model of forklift to ensure you are receiving the most accurate information possible. OSHA also requires that you receive training on the specific class of forklift you operate.
While OSHA doesn’t offer specific requirements as to what forklift training should look like, there are a few key points that should be included in any heavy machinery safety training.
Any safety training you receive should detail how to conduct a pre-shift inspection, how to maintain stability on your machine, and how to complete basic operations safely. Safety training should also identify all the types of hazards you may encounter while on the job.
Many training programs advertise “free” safety trainings. These trainings can be useful for a quick refresher or answer to a question, so they’re not all bad. However, don’t be fooled. These free options do not fulfill OSHA’s requirement for proper and consistent safety training. Or, while they might advertise that they are free, you still have to pay for the certificate and wallet card that will prove to an investigator that you have received training.
Remember, safety training is an investment. Don’t go for the “free” training and expect quality results. Instead, look for safety trainings that offer in-depth information that will help you recognize and avoid hazardous workplace scenarios.
An in-depth but cost-effective option is Hard Hat Training’s OSHA-Compliant Powered Industrial Truck Safety Training, which gives an overview of each type of forklift and general safety information. Good luck, and stay safe!