OSHA Compliant ForkliftOSHA Compliant Forklift Training & Certification

Per the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA),  it is a violation of Federal Law to operate a forklift without proper training and holding a valid forklift certification – and one that comes with hefty penalties: 

  • Serious violations can cost a business $13,653 per violation!
  • Failure to abate violations can cost a business $13,653 per day beyond the abatement date! AND…
  • Willful or repeated violations can COST a business $136,532 per violation!

You see, under OSHA, forklifts are categorized as powered industrial trucks – proving to be an asset across various industries. They move, raise, lower, and remove objects, pallets, boxes, containers, and more. 

Although beneficial, they can present costly hazards to the forklift operator, pedestrians, loads, equipment, etc. Therefore, to protect lives and assets, OSHA regulates the industry – stressing the importance of: 

  1. Inspecting and maintaining the forklift before use.
  2. Using and implementing good operating practices when traveling and maneuvering to prevent accidents. 
  3. Identifying hazards and implementing appropriate practices when load handling. 

Let’s elaborate…

OSHA Compliant Forklift Pre-operations

OSHA requires that all forklifts are examined daily, prior to the forklift operator’s shift, before placed in service. This requires a pre-operation inspection of such items as fluid levels, visible defects, tire conditions, fork conditions, load backrest extension, seatbelts, finger guard, visibility of safety decals and nameplates, and proper working safety devices. 

Additionally, the forklift operator should turn the engine on and conduct an operational inspection of such items as the brakes, steering, drive control, accelerator linkage, tilt control, house and lowering control, attachment control, horn, lights, and for unusual noises or vibrations.  

A forklift found to be in need of repair, defective, or in any way unsafe should be removed from service with the problem recorded and reported to a supervisor immediately.

OSHA Compliant Forklift Traveling and Maneuvering

After the forklift is found to be in proper and safe working order, the forklift operator must safely operate the forklift by:

  1. Mounting and dismounting on and off the forklift in a manner that prevents slips, trips, falls, and hitting their head on the overhead cage.
  2. Starting and stopping the forklift clear from any hazards. 
  3. Maintaining and controlling the forklift at an appropriate speed that will permit the forklift to stop in a safe manner – particularly to avoid colliding with pedestrians and obstacles, as well as not tipping over from driving too fast.
  4. Steering, turning, and changing directions while avoiding collisions, tipping over, and causing falling loads. 
  5. Complying with safe travel practices to prevent such hazards as overturning, colliding, or being struck by falling loads or even another forklift. 
  6. Maintaining visibility of surroundings at all times to prevent accidents.

OSHA Compliant Load Handling

Moreover, to prevent unnecessary accidents, forklift operators must safely pick up, transport, stack, and unstack loads by making sure loads are secure, centered, properly distributed, and neither overloaded nor damaged / loose.

Although this may appear as many items to keep an active sense of awareness for when operating a forklift, at American Forklift Training Centers, INC., we offer OSHA compliant forklift training and certification tailored to your learning style – so you can confidently and most importantly – safely, operate a forklift. 

To learn more, please call us at: (323) 620-7000.