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Companies all over the UK use forklift trucks to move freight, cargo, and supplies on a daily basis. Some forklifts are active in outside yards; others are constantly moving throughout warehouses and factory floors; still others spend time both indoors and out. In every single case, employers are required to take every reasonable step to ensure the safety of operators and other workers. We believe it is essential for every employer running forklifts to demand a forklift certificate of any new hire. Those already on the payroll should be trained and certified as well.

If you don’t agree, we can give you 1000+ reasons that we believe certification is so important. Consider an article published by the Mirror on 8 February (2016). The article was entitled, Top 5 Most Common Accidents at Work and How to Claim If You’ve Been Hurt. The title should give you an idea of the focus of the article.

The unnamed author was not as concerned about avoiding workplace accidents as explaining to injured workers how they can make claims. That is a big problem all by itself. Nonetheless, number five on the list was forklift accidents. More than 1,000 people were injured in forklift-related accidents last year. Some of those accidents resulted in serious injuries and others in fatalities.

Forklifts Are Inherently Dangerous

The tone of the Mirror article aside, employers need to understand that forklifts are inherently dangerous. They are built and designed for a particular purpose: moving and stacking cargo in warehouses, shipping yards, and so forth. The machines are not intended to be as safe as the family car. They cannot be if forklifts are to remain functional. Therefore, it is incumbent upon forklift drivers to employ certain safety strategies to ensure no one is injured.

As you may already know, there is no such thing as a forklift licence in the UK. Workplace regulations only require that drivers receive adequate training commensurate with the work they do. Employers can provide in-house training – as long as it is properly documented – or contract with a company such as ours to conduct the training for them. The advantage of contracting is that drivers receive a forklift certificate upon completion of training.

The HGV Training Centre offers forklift training based on the scheme developed by the Independent Training Standards Scheme and Register (ITSSAR). As such, the forklift certificate that our students earn demonstrates they have been trained according to the highest standards in the industry. That certificate provides proof of employer compliance should an issue ever arise.

If you own or manage a company where forklifts are used, we urge you not to neglect proper forklift operator training. Last year there were 1000+ reasons why insisting on a forklift certificate is a good idea. The last thing you want is for an accident on your premises to contribute to a thousand more reasons this year. Get your operators trained and certified before you find yourself having to answer for an otherwise avoidable accident.

Sources:

Mirror – https://www.mirror.co.uk/lifestyle/top-5-most-common-accidents-7330177

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