The Dangers of Casual Forklift Training

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has revealed that many employers are allowing new forklift operators to be trained casually, by existing forklift operators, rather than by an accredited training provider.If that wasn’t enough cause for concern, they also stated that many of the operatives carrying out this casual training may have received their training in the same manner; meaning that the instructors themselves have also never received any formal or accredited training.

Properly trained instructors

According to the HSE’s Approved Code of Practice for Rider Operated lift truck guidance (L117), all forklift training should to delivered by a properly trained and qualified trainer. The largest and most respected forklift training accrediting body in the UK, have issued a warning to employers in response to this news, stating that in order to reduce the likelihood of accidents in the workplace, and protect employers from prosecution, they should ensure all instructors receive the proper training.Last year, the HSE prosecuted an employer following the death of a forklift operator who was thrown from his forklift and crushed. The operator had received only 20 minutes of ‘in-house’ training and had no formal forklift accreditation. The employer was fined £24,500 for the failing.

In-house training

Many employers believe that a good forklift operator, who understands the specific business operations of their employer, is the best person to train new staff. And whilst this might be true from an operational perspective, a qualified instructor will have a better understanding of the wider implications and can ensure safety, efficiency and confidence in operatives. They can also help to lower margins by reducing damage to equipment and products.However, using a qualified instructor doesn’t mean that you have to contract out your training, and lose the benefits of having an ‘in-house’ instructor that takes your individual business requirements into consideration.

Your forklift instructor will also have a thorough understanding of the relevant legislation and frameworks, so you can rely on them to identify areas for concern within your business and advise you on issues that could affect the health and safety of your staff. To find out more about forklift training and the benefit it will bring to your business, contact the team at UK Forklifty Truck Training. We have years of experience training operatives and can ensure your workforce is trained to perform at the highest standards.