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The Importance Of Forklift Training

Author: Erin Warbrook
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Forklift trucks are mainly used in industries to lift and move heavy materials from one place to another. In the recent years, forklifting technology has progressed tremendously. For companies who own these heavy machines, their maintenance is extremely important and beneficial in the long run. However, from hundreds and thousands of companies that purchase these lift trucks and bring them into day-to-day operation, most of them overlook the human factor associated with the same. The first and the foremost aspect about forklift safety relates to understanding the fact that these are very heavy and powerful machines. It does not take much for them to create havoc. As a result, the people operating these lift trucks need to be certified and trained properly.

The role played by an operator is the key behind ensuring proper and safe use of forklifts. Having properly certified and trained operators on-board becomes mandatory for the business owners. For those companies that have fast service dispatch, getting adversely affected by a lack of training is one dangerous issue that needs immediate attention. As well as imposed fines and penalties, there are various other reasons why business owners should have properly certified and trained forklift drivers employed. If the businesses already have lift truck drivers, they should be properly trained in regards to the safety operations and other aspects of the truck.


Properly trained and skilled drivers can move all kinds of heavy goods in a fast, steady and careful manner; thus, increasing the overall productivity and maximising the output per man-hour. This in itself is a major reason why these operators need to be trained properly.

Reduced Chance of Risk

Accidents are a part and parcel of forklift operations. With unskilled operators, the chances of accidents and other dangerous situations increase tremendously. While such accidents are certainly unfortunate, they can and should be avoided by giving proper training to the drivers. Tutoring the current operators should be the first and the foremost step in reducing the chances of accidental damage at the place of work. This can help a business retain its old and trusted employees at a lesser training cost, and will also add up to the market repute of the company.

Reduced Inventory Loss

If there haven’t been any accidents, there might have been some losses in the inventory due to the improper handling of goods by a forklift operator. The kinds of losses might not appear to be as costly at that moment, but can add up in the long run. The accumulated cost of such losses would be much more than getting the forklift operators trained.

Lesser Machine Damage

Trained and certified operators make sure that the machines are operated in a proper manner and are not mishandled. The damage can lead to some huge expenditure for the business. Training makes sure that the cost of repair is reduced by incurring a one-time training expense for the operators.

Better Maintenance of Forklifts

The trained operators can come handy in maintaining the machines in their proper working condition, all through the year. This reduces the cost of repairs and maintenance to a great extent. It also lessens the chances of breakdown during the day-to-day operations, while increasing the life of these machines.

Increased Confidence

Trained operators will have a higher level of confidence when operating a forklift. Training the current employees will make them feel satisfied and content, and will enhance the level of motivation to work better and in a focused manner.

Therefore, forklift training is one vital aspect of any business that aims at delivering quality and timely services to its clients and customers. It should not be considered to be a burden on the budget of the business. Rather, it is an aspect that can help a business perform better, keeping in mind the safety of the employees.

About the Author

Erin Warbrook knows OH&S having worked with engineers in the past as an OH&S officer. She is a strong advocate of getting professional forklift training for your staff for a safer and more efficient warehouse.

photo credit: Oxfam International via photopin cc

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Tags: businessclientscompanyconfessioncustomersdriversforkliftforkliftingmaintenancemarketmotivationprofessionalstafftechnologytrainingwarehouseworking


  1. Justin Fitt says:

    Glad to see this information on Forklifting. I am very interested in seeing more in-depth articles on Forklifting from you.

  2. Omega Selca says:

    Are there any businesses in Michigan where i can get certified for a forklift?

  3. Carletta Trinkley says:

    Can loosing your car licence for Drink Driving affect your forklift licence?

  4. Kenneth Gajda says:

    The forklift is probably the MVP most of the time.

  5. Anissa Neiderhiser says:

    I applied to the Home Depot and Lowes, and surprisingly, they did not even ask if I am forklift certified, what gives? I just got my license, and I know that places like those need forklift drivers. Does anyone know any other employers that I should consider applying to? Also, does a forklift certification increase my chances of landing a warehouse job even though I won't necessarily operate one?.

  6. Norma Hamm says:

    If a forklift truck tips over due to too much weight, but the load indicator didnt work, whose fault?

  7. Frank Ford says:

    Without appropriate forklift training you put your employer at risk of an OSHA violation and put your peers and co workers at risk.

  8. Jack Kramer says:

    I think trained and skilled workers can move large lift parts pretty fast, thus saving time and increasing productivity and maximizing work done per man-hour.

  9. For those of you who are interested in a free selection of downloadable forklift safety resources we just published, check out:

  10. Patsy Littlefield says:

    Hello Christian. my assistant located a template FL 12.982(a) document at this site

  11. mike pattenson says:

    What must the training include? A training program must consist of these three parts:

    1. Formal instruction can be given using lectures, discussions, interactive computer learning, videos, or written material. Formal instruction does not have to occur in an actual classroom.

    It can be as simple as the trainer talking to the trainee and explaining training material, such as the concept of vehicle stability, what causes instability, and how to avoid it.

    2. Practical, hands-on training covers demonstrations performed by the trainer and practical exercises performed by the trainee.

    3. An evaluation of the operator's ability to handle the truck safely in the workplace must be conducted by the trainer. Specific training topics to be covered are listed in the standards. All of the topics must be covered unless the employer can show that certain topics are not needed.

    For example, an employee assigned to operate an order picker must be trained in the location and function of the controls; the location and operation of the engine or motor; steering and maneuvering; visibility; inspection and maintenance; other general operating functions of the vehicle; and workplace-related topics.

  12. mike pattenson says:

    For those who want to know about application of forklift license, we've prepared a step by step guide:

  13. The Importance Of Forklift Training
    Forklift training is one vital aspect of any business...

  14. While I was shopping yesterday, I noticed a worker using a forklift to stock shelves. This made me curious as to what kind of training these men and women receive. I didn't realize workers that receive forklift safety training can actually improve the speed of the work while reducing the chance of accidental damage to the work area. I'll remember this information next time I go to the store.

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