OSHA requires that all forklift operators be adequately trained and satisfactorily evaluated in the safe operation of the forklift. OSHA puts this responsibility to the employer to make sure the workers, irrespective of their employment status, who drive forklifts as part of their duty, be given forklift safety training. The company is the sole in-charge for the training and certification of the workers. There are three options available for you to be able to comply:
- Hiring an outside consultant to provide the training on-site.
- Sending the operators to outside training facility.
- Appointing an internal trainer to teach the workers whenever occasions arise and necessary.
The third option is the most practical and viable one for you to save money, time and energy. To do this, you need to have forklift training materials to aid your trainer in delivering the lectures more effectively. Forklift Training materials are devices such video presentations, interactive computer programs, infographic diagrams, photographs, illustrations, posters, overhead projector transparencies, wallet-size operator cards, training certificates, student handouts, evaluation checklist and other kits that are intended to improve learning absorption and retention by the trainees.
Forklift Training Materials to Get You Going
There are many different ways in which the trainer can deliver the course to make it more interesting and memorable for the forklift operators. The conventional but effective approach is to use instructional aids. These are training materials used in the classroom to aid the instructor present the subjects in a more clear and effective way. Training materials can be visual aids and interactive tools. Both of these are used in combination in the class so that the learning process is quick and fun.
There are many kinds of training materials the trainer can utilize and it is possible to create unique kinds of his own that could be deemed suitable and appropriate. But generally, the things needed initially to get started the forklift training course are as follows:
- Competent Trainer
Let me start by citing the competent trainer who can conduct operator training and evaluation. According to OSHA 1910.178(l)(2)(iii), the trainer should have the knowledge and experience in delivering the training course. Though OSHA did not specifically mention the requirements, but an example of a qualified instructor would be someone who has recognized degree related to it, attained level of certification, a person who has achieved professional standing in the field of safety, or at the very least who has the experience and has demonstrated the competence to train and assess forklift operators in the employer’s workplace.
- Forklifts Specific to the Training Course
Remember, a forklift training course is not a one size fits all. The forklift operators must be trained on the exact type of truck they will be driving and not on the brand and model of the forklift.
According to OSHA, it is the employer who is responsible to supply the equipment-specific training on the forklift that the workers will be using.
With that being the rule, it is much more appropriate for the employer to formulate a training course that matches to the forklifts being used in the workplace to make the training more effective.
Aside from equipment-specific, workplace-related topics must also be included in the training course.
- Interactive Video and Computer Presentations
PowerPoint Presentations and video training guides are effective methods to make the trainees engaged and get their attention. These materials will entice them to absorb knowledge more effectively.
Videos and DVDs can be helpful in the induction of knowledge. By the way, what could be more appealing than watching? Videos can be presented to the trainees as a replacement for the typical classroom lecture.
DVD training materials can be downloaded below.
- Reading Materials and Hand-Outs in PDF Format
Resource packages and handbooks in PDf formats are common nowadays. The training materials can be downloaded to be read in tablets or smartphones. It is more convenient to read than traditional paperbacks or books.
It is usually given to trainees during the beginning of the training course. It contains all the information of the curriculum that may or may not be covered in the classroom lecture.
- Training Questionnaires
The two distinct stages of the forklift course are formal lectures and practical exercises. The in-class lecture is a mandatory and crucial part. During every classroom lecture, the examination is needed to gauge the knowledge gained by the trainees. A set or series of questions are given to trainees to obtain the level of skill they’ve attained by attending the classroom lecture.
You can download a sample of the questionnaire from here: Free Ebook Questionnaire
- Certificates and Forklift Operator License Cards
OSHA did not mention the issuance of forklift license to be mandatory. As a matter of fact, there is no such thing as a forklift license. The operators referred to it as forklift operator card. The terms forklift license, operator card, and training certificate are used interchangeably that only referred to the same document.
If it is not required by OSHA, then why is this need to be issued to every successful trainee? The forklift license is the documentary evidence that the forklift operator has undergone a training course making him qualified and capable to operate the equipment.
If OSHA visited your site for inspection, there is some sort of verification your operators can show to prove their competence. Would you want to face hefty fines and penalty? I know you would not want that! Issue Your Workers With Forklift Training Certificates and Licenses!
OSHA-Compliant Training Materials in Package
OSHA Standards 29 CFR 1910.178 requires training and certification for any worker who operates a powered industrial truck in the workplace. ALWAYS stay compliant!
OSHA, being the reviewer of the standard and implementer of the rules, does not certify operators, issue license or conduct training course. The training is the obligation and duty of the employer. Workers, whether permanent or temporary, who have had accident such as near miss or observed doing unsafe practices are required to take refresher training. Prepare your training materials so that you can give them the training right away.
This forklift training material satisfies the liability insurance, employee compensation claim, OSHA inspectors and related federal laws. Conform to rules and policies!
If OSHA visited your company premises and discovered a violation, OSHA can enforce a $10,000 severe fine for each uncertified worker who is operating forklift. The violation could become harsh if OSHA found out that commission of violation is willful, you could face up to $70,000 fine. Don’t let that happens to you!
Every year, it has reported by BLR that there are 100,000 injuries involving forklifts and 100 operators lose their lives in the US alone. Don't let one of your forklift operators be one of them.
Tips When Buying Training Materials
- If you employ LPG and gas-powered forklifts in the workplace, the good option you can take is to find video or DVD training package that teaches safe operation in these both types of forklifts so that you won’t have to buy them separately.
- The DVDs should be in multi-languages – English and Spanish for easy understanding of those operators who are not keen understanding English.
- The training package should include templates of forklift operator cards and certificates. If you are run out of cards/certificates, you can use the templates to create and print your own.
- The training package should have a money-back policy. So that you can try it out first, and if you are not happy, you can return it. Absolutely risk-free!
When Do You Need to Have Training Materials
- When you are new to this game and you want to employ forklift training as part of the safety policy of the company that could help eliminate accidents causing damage to materials and equipment and injury to the workers.
- If the training materials you have are old and out-of-date, most likely, it no longer conforms with the current government policy, then you need to get a new kit you can use to teach to your operators.
- When the one you are using is no longer suitable for the type of trucks being employed in the workplace.
- When the training materials you are using is no longer in compliance with the current OSHA standards and local legislation.
To Wrap the Conclusion
Safe operation of forklifts is crucial for any company. A day to day business operation is a constant battle because serious accidents could occur at any time, it is real threat plaguing businesses that utilize heavy equipment. To avoid any misfortune, personnel training, advocacy, and education should be continuous.
Training and certification of the forklift operators should not be an issue and a topic for concern. You only need to appoint a competent internal trainer and provide him the forklift training materials and you are on your way to having a safe and protected working environment.