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Teaching Forklift Safety to Warehouse Workers

November 15, 2021

Compared to all industries nationally, warehousing has a higher average injury rate. About 100 workers are killed every year while operating forklifts and 95,000 are injured.1 Employees are also often injured with manual lifting/handling, materials storage, and from poor hazard communication or poorly maintained equipment such as cushion forklift tires. All workers with forklift jobs in Chicago must consider the training guidelines of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

Training is an essential part of warehouse management. In addition to maintaining and replacing lift truck parts when necessary, and working with dependable forklift distributors, it’s important employees are aware of current and updated safety procedures and other guidelines.

Following warehouse safety guidelines is important, and finding a forklift for sale in Illinois is not the only way to cut spending, as training can reduce injuries, downtime, and legal costs.

OSHA Warehouse Safety Training

OSHA recognizes worksites that have superior safety and health management systems regarding warehousing. Numerous associations are affiliated with the Alliance Program, while Voluntary Protection Programs are a strong component of OSHA’s Warehouse Industry Cooperative Programs.

Powered industrial truck operator training requirements are governed by a standard that requires employers to design/implement programs that consider:

  • Proper and safe truck operation
  • The type of vehicles used
  • Evaluation of operator knowledge
  • Formal lectures, videos, and other materials
  • Practical demonstrations and exercises
  • Training and evaluation of operators every three years
  • Employers certify operators’ training is up to date

Employers must also demonstrate an operator’s ability before one is allowed to operate a lift truck in the workplace. Refresher training is a necessity if the operator is in an accident or demonstrates a deficiency in safe operations of any kind. In addition, OSHA maintains specific guidelines as to who can conduct training. This individual must have the degree, certificate, experience, knowledge, or professional standing to demonstrate they can train and evaluate operators.2

The OSHA standard also requires employers to certify their operators are given the appropriate training, with the operator’s name, date of training and evaluation, and trainer’s identity. The administration also outlines the safety tips warehouse workers should follow, including that forklifts meet the requirements of the American National Standard for Powered Industrial Trucks or Part II ANSI B56.1-1969. A useful tool for warehouse operators is available as well—the OSHA warehouse safety inspection checklist.

OSHA-Compliant Training from Atlas

The operator safety training program from Atlas Toyota Material Handling complies with OSHA regulations 29 CFR 1910.178 and covers much more than a warehouse health and safety checklist. It is a class where extensive technical training is integrated.

A warehouse safety manual is included in the lecture and video format, and the program concludes with a written evaluation, performance evaluation, and certificate of achievement. Each trainee that passes the exam and evaluation also receives an operating permit.

For more information about Atlas’ up-to-date OSHA warehouse safety training, visit the safety course page or call 877-438-2719 today!


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