How Often is Forklift Training Needed?

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) does not require a regular schedule of training. In fact, how frequently training is offered to forklift operators is at the discretion of each business owner. OSHA does require that each forklift operator’s performance be reevaluated every three years, but if the evaluation demonstrates competence, no further training is required.

If your company uses forklifts, you probably already know that forklift operators must be properly trained. It makes sense because a safe workplace requires the safe operation of equipment. But how often is forklift training needed? This seems like a straightforward question, but the answer is a little more complicated than you might expect.

As you’d probably expect, all workers who are going to use a forklift need forklift training before they ever operate one. But it might surprise you to learn that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) does not require a regular schedule of training. In fact, how frequently training is offered to forklift operators is at the discretion of each business owner. OSHA does require that each forklift operator’s performance be reevaluated every three years, but if the evaluation demonstrates competence, no further training is required.

Regardless of OSHA requirements, there are certain times when refresher training is appropriate. By keeping your workers’ training up to date, you can prevent workplace accidents and improve efficiency. Consider conducting a refresher course when:

  • You observe operators operating forklifts in an unsafe manner.
  • A forklift operator is involved in an accident or near-accident.
  • If you suspect your operators aren’t using forklifts safely.
  • An operator receives a poor evaluation.
  • The workplace setting changes.
  • A forklift operator is assigned to a new location.
  • Your forklift operators begin using a new type of forklift.
  • You hire new forklift operators.

When you do provide forklift training for your employees, it must consist of three parts.

  • Classroom training. Formal instruction can include components like lectures, discussions, interactive computer learning, Power Point presentations and videos, written materials, and reading.
  • Practical training. Hands-on demonstrations can be given by the trainer in the actual workplace or a simulated environment. The trainees must also participate in exercises on the model of forklift that will be used on the job.
  • Evaluation. The operator will be observed and evaluated while using a forklift. In addition to this practical test, there will be a written exam. Operators must pass both parts of this evaluation to be certified.

Whether you want to buy a forklift, you’re looking for a forklift rental company, or you need forklift training, Ring Power Lift Trucks has got you covered. Our trainers are certified by the state and Caterpillar/Mitsubishi, and they’ll come to your workplace to train your employees in familiar territory.  For 60 years, our locally-owned and operated business has provided superior products, the newest technology in forklift vehicles, and exceptional service. With 14 convenient locations throughout Florida, Ring Power Corporation has become one of the largest Caterpillar® dealers in the Southeastern United States because of our dedication to customer service. Whether you need training, you want to buy a new or used forklift, or you’d prefer a short-term or long-term forklift rental, we’re here for you. We also supply forklift parts and service in north and central Florida for every make and model of forklift.  Call 877.544.5438 or visit our website for more information.

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