Forklift Truck Training
Associated Trainers provide operator training on all types of forklift truck, from the most common type, the counterbalance right through to some of the rarest container handling trucks used in British ports throughout the UK.
Associated Trainers are accredited with ITSSAR (Independent Training Standards Scheme & Register) as a Category 2 Operator Training Organisation.
Forklift truck training we can provide for you:
- Novice operator:- For people who have never had any forklift truck experience.
- Experienced operator:- For people with some experience of forklift truck operations.
- Refresher training:- This training is for operators that have been previously trained and hold a basic operators certificate. This should be carried out at set intervals, as described in the company risk assessment for forklift truck operation.
- Conversion courses:- This course is aimed at anyone who has a certificate for a forklift truck and wishes to operate a different type of forklift. Most conversion courses are one day in duration. However, in some cases i.e. converting to reach trucks from counterbalance trucks may require more time due to its unconventional steering.
All course lengths depend on the number and experience of the trainees.
Maximum number of trainees per course is three.
Forklift Truck Operator Training
The law requires forklift truck operators to be trained. Regulation 9 of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER 98) states:
"Every employer shall ensure that all persons who use work equipment have received adequate training"
Adequate training means sufficient for the job which, for forklift truck operators, takes days rather than hours.
As well as being a legal requirement there are sound safety and commercial reasons for ensuring that operators are properly trained. Lost time due to injury has financial implications as do damaged goods, buildings and trucks. Skilled operators have fewer accidents.
The training of operators usually includes three stages;
- Basic Training: The basic skills and knowledge required for safe operations.
- Specific Job Training: Knowledge of the workplace and experience of any special needs.
- Familiarisation Training: Operation on the job under close supervision.
Different training is required for different categories of fork lift truck. On completion of training the operator is issued a certificate and all their original training documents. This will show the category of truck that they may operate. There are over 40 different categories of forklift truck. At Associated Trainers we scan all documentation into our Zylab database before it is released for internal / external audit purposes and regulatory bodies including the HSE.
Training requirements for hand pallet trucks
Hand pallet trucks, or rather their operators, are responsible for many accidents in the workplace. Training requirements should not be underestimated. Regulation 9 of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER 98) makes it very clear that an employer must provide adequate training for all persons who use work equipment. This includes training on how the equipment should be used, the risks involved and precautions to be taken. The same regulation makes it clear that those who supervise or manage the use of such equipment must also receive adequate training. All the various types of hand controlled pallet trucks would fall into this category, from the simple manual pump truck through to quite complex electric counterbalance stackers. The degree of training required, and the time it will take, will vary according to the type of equipment and the tasks to be performed. For the more basic equipment it may be possible to provide in-house training. This still needs to be properly organised and formally recorded.
Forklift Truck Training FAQs
How long does a forklift truck driver's licence last?
There is no such thing as a forklift truck driver's licence!
There is no central licensing authority but from January 2015 all accredited certificates must be registered on one of the four Accredited Bodies national databases.
Every employer has a responsibility, under Regulation 9 of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER 98), to ensure that employees have adequate training before they use work equipment. The training required in order to operate most fork lift trucks is explained in the Approved Code of Practice for Rider-Operated Lift Trucks (L117).
The operator should receive training on each type of equipment they may be required to operate. Such training may be provided by an in-house instructor or an external trainer. The training provider should then issue a certificate, or other document, giving details of the results of that training. This document is not a licence. The employer is required to give written authority for any employee to actually operate the equipment. If an individual document is issued this is the closest document to a licence, but it is not a licence. The employer alone will determine how long this authority remains valid but it is good practice to ensure that the performance of all operators is formally monitored.
How often do I need to provide forklift truck refresher training?
There is no specific time period after which you need to provide refresher training or formal assessment. However, you may decide that automatic refresher training or a retest after a set period (for example 3-5 years) is the best way to make sure employees remain competent. Where you adopt this approach, you will still need to monitor performance, in case operators need extra training before the set period ends.
The length of a refresher training course will be set by assessment of the operators to identify shortcomings and any unsafe habits which need correction. It is not, therefore, possible to advise on the length of refresher training. However, it is unlikely that refresher courses of less than one day will be effective. We would always recommend the companies speak to their insurance companies as a precaution to ensure that any decision in this regard needs to be an informed one. i.e. To keep within their terms and conditions of your insurance policies. Where this advice is sought we advise that a letter of confirmation from the Insurers stance is held. This confirmation should then be taken as the minimum requirement. The decision of refresher timescales can then be made in conjunction with the risk assessment for forklift operation . i.e. The insurer states 5 yearly refreshers but the risk assessment says 3 yearly then the timescale should be a maximum of 3 yearly.
PLEASE NOTE: Refresher training cannot be carried out without proof of previous training on the same category of forklift truck. Insurance companies do not insure against Health & Safety breaches.
I have been trained by my previous employer and I have a copy of my certificate. Can I use a forklift for my new employer?
There is only one type of certificate that is transferable from one employer to another and that is an 'Accredited' certificate. Since January 2015, it became mandatory for all Accrediting Bodies of forklift truck training to administer a national database for their training providers, issuing accredited certification. However, you need to ensure that the certificate is for the same category of forklift truck.
This does not negate a new employer from their responsibilities of providing Specific Job training or Familiarisation training which they must do and formally record. Before you accept written authorisation ensure this is carried out with you. If you or your new employer would like us to verify a certificate we are happy to do this free of charge. There are many fraudulent certificates in circulation.
I have more questions or queries. Where can I go to get answers?
Associated Trainers gives free, up to date advice without any obligation. We're happy to help. Or you can check out the Health & Safety Executive website www.hse.gov.uk