An area that sometimes causes some confusion amongst employers is the subject of forklift refresher training. Currently there are no specific times laid down for operator refresher training although it is mandatory that it is carried out in certain circumstances.
The regulations that deals with forklift training states that forklift refresher training should be provided but leaves the employer to determine when that should be. As a general rule most employers would seek to arrange for their operators to receive refresher training somewhere between three and five years after the basic training has been carried out. The guidelines state that regular refresher training will ensure operators:
- Maintain good driving habits
- Learn new skills where appropriate
- Reassess their abilities
It also states that forklift refresher training or re-testing might also be appropriate where operators:
- Have not used trucks for some time
- Are occasional users
- Appear to have developed unsafe working practices
- Have had an accident or near miss
- Have changed their working practices or environment
- New Equipment is introduced to the facility or the facility layout changes significantly
In the event of an accident or investigation the authorities will ask to see the certificate of training. They will then possibly ask for proof of other training such as that designed for special attachments or unusual working conditions etc. They may also inquire further about the course durations to see if they correspond with those laid down by the accrediting bodies. If they do not, it may be deemed that the training was insufficient, and a possible prosecution may follow. The length of time that had passed since the training was provided is another element that they may investigate as well.
Most Importantly- It is the EMPLOYER who has the authority to give permission for an employee to operate fork-lifts at the company and this should be in writing. Neither the instructor or the training company have the authority to do this in law.
RMG provides a 4-hour theory course that is designed for an operator who has previous certification but requires an updated training that is consistent with current legislation. Ministry guidelines and safe driving practices will be covered, and the program will be specifically geared to your application and/or equipment choice. This course will provide the attendee with a Lift Truck Certificate upon successful completion of the theoretical component.