June 2011- Forklift Training

What information does the Powered Industrial Trucks OSHA standard cover?

This standard contains safety requirements relating to fire protection, design, maintenance, and use of fork trucks, tractors, platform lift trucks, motorized hand trucks, and other specialized industrial trucks powered by electric motors or internal combustion engines.

What is a Powered Industrial Truck (PIT)?

A Powered Industrial Truck (PIT) is a mobile, power-driven vehicle used to carry, push, pull, lift or stack material. There are 12 different types of PITs, and designated types of PITs can be operated safety in varying environments (e.g. flammable areas, dusty environments, etc.).

What does PIT training consist of?

The standard requires operator training and licensing as well as periodic evaluations of operator performance. The standard also addresses specific training requirements for truck operation, loading, seat belts, overhead protective structures, alarms, and maintenance of industrial trucks. Refresher training is required if the operator is observed operating the truck in an unsafe manner, is involved in an accident or near miss, or is assigned a different type of truck.

What training is required when an operator is to operate different types of powered industrial trucks?

According to the OSHA PIT standard, the employer must ensure that each PIT operator is competent to operate a PIT safely and must demonstrate this by successful completion of the training and evaluation as specified in the standard.
An operator must be trained and evaluated in the safe operation for the type of truck that the operator will be assigned to operate in the employer’s workplace. For example, if an operator is assigned to operate a sit-down counterbalanced rider truck, then the operator must be trained and evaluated in the safe operation for that type of truck. If an operator is assigned to operate an operator-up counterbalanced front/side loader truck, or a rough terrain forklift, then the operator must be trained and evaluated in the safe operation for those types of trucks.

Is PIT training certification required?

Yes, after completion of the training and evaluation the employer must certify that this training and evaluation has taken place. The certification shall include the name of the operator, the date of training, the date of the evaluation and the identity of the person(s) performing the training and evaluation.

Who must provide PIT training to the truck drivers delivering to my site?

As the employer you are not required to train drivers who are not in your employ, however, you must ensure that such individuals have been trained in accordance with the provisions of the standard before they are permitted to operate powered industrial trucks at your facility.

At a minimum, an employer is responsible for the safety of its own employees. Thus, if the unsafe operation of powered industrial trucks could endanger your employees, you would be obligated to prevent such danger by satisfying yourself that powered industrial truck operators have been properly trained. See this interpretation for more information.
For more information see OSHA’s Standard covering Powered Industrial Trucks.

Disclaimer: These Regulatory Reminders are not intended to be an exhaustive source for all of your particular facility’s compliance issues. They are designed to address the basics requirements with which most companies are required to comply. Following the Regulatory Reminder’s deadlines and Monthly Focus will not guarantee your compliance as these reminders are simply designed to help in your environmental/safety compliance efforts. You should always refer to the federal and your state’s regulations for all your requirements. Ultimately, your compliance with federal and state regulations is your responsibility. E&SSG assumes no liability for your compliance or the resources provided in these “Reminders”.

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