By Law, Forklift Certification is a Requirement
Throughout the DFW area and most of Texas, several industries require the use of forklifts for transporting their supplies or goods. These pieces of heavy machinery are critical to the efficiency of most warehouses, but they can also be dangerous. All employers are responsible for ensuring that all of their drivers are forklift certified. This forklift certification ensures that these workers are competent at safely operating these vehicles.
Employers are responsible for the safety of their workplace and their employees. Ensuring that all drivers have the appropriate forklift certification means they can better avoid forklift-related injuries.
Why You Need Forklift Certification
To put it simply, it is the law. This law is put in place to ensure the safety of everyone in the workplace.
The Occupational Safety Health Administration (OSHA, 1910.178(l)(6)) requires that anyone operating a forklift must be certified before they are allowed to operate them. OSHA’s purpose is to create regulations that ensure the health and safety of everyone in the workforce.
Forklifts are incredibly powerful pieces of equipment, and because of this, they can be very dangerous. An employee with forklift certification means that they have received the appropriate knowledge and training to safely operate a forklift.
The next thing you are probably wondering is how exactly you get your forklift certification. Because it is a legal requirement, there are several training opportunities for any potential employee. Many employers will pay for a new employee to receive this training, but it is best to already be certified.
Another important thing to note is that there are two ways to receive certification: in-person and online. We will take a look at both here.
- In-Person: This is the most effective form of training. You typically receive your forklift training by going to a school or a private company. All you need to do is register, go to the classroom lectures, perform the practice test, and then get evaluated by your instructor. This usually lasts two days, depending on the quality of training and the level at which you learn.
- Online: Not everyone can enjoy in-person training, which is why online training is offered. Online training simulates the classroom lectures with formal education and the evaluation of the course. However, you don’t get to practice driving, which OSHA requires all drivers to have a formal driving test. Because of this, online training can’t fully certify you.
Steps You Need to Take
If you do opt for in-person training, which we here at Ace Equipment recommend you do, we have provided a short guide to get you and your employees ready for your certification.
- Self-Assessment: This is important because it allows those who are new to forklifts to find the best training for their needs. Here, you will need to assess what type of forklift you intend on operating. This will allow you to choose the best training school for you.
- Enroll in Training: This might be the easiest step of them all. After you have found the right school or training program for you, just enroll.
- Attend Lectures: Arguably the most boring step, attending classroom lectures is a must. This will take no longer than eight hours in total. In the classroom, you will learn about OSHA regulations, general workplace safety, safe forklift driving, and much more. This information will help you prevent workplace accidents.
- Examinations: There are two examinations you must go through, including a written exam and practice driving test. In the written exam, you must show you learned and retained the information from the lectures. 75% is deemed passing. In the practice driving test, you will need to complete a serious of tasks proving you can safely operate a forklift.
- Evaluation: Once the driving test is complete, the trainer will then evaluate your performance. If you have passed both the written and practice exams, you will then receive your forklift certification. However, it is important to remember this certification expires after three years.
By law, all forklift operators must receive forklift certification before they can operate them. This certification ensures that all drivers are competent in operating this machine, improving the safety of their workplace. To learn more about forklift certification, contact Ace Equipment.