Bae 5 Tracker
forklift pedestrian training

Warehouse manager’s guide: 5 risks of not performing operator training

Only a few of the 68,400 lift truck accidents that happen every year in the U.S. are fatal. Still, they all put warehouse managers in danger. Whether you’re a new operator or a warehouse pro, it is extremely important that you have proper training and keep up-to-date on the equipment you use. Here are five risks you and your company face when not performing operator training:
  1. It’s illegal:
    Anyone who operates a forklift must be trained on each class of equipment they will be using. That’s the law as set by Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Training must include formal classroom instruction, practical training, or driving the equipment, and an evaluation of the operator’s performance in the workplace. OSHA states that, “any person who, by possession of a recognized degree, certificate, or professional standing, or who by knowledge, training and experience, has demonstrated the ability to train and evaluate powered industrial truck operators”, is able to train operators. This can be an authorized company employee or an authorized outside trainer.

To help you decide whether in-house or an outside trainer may be best for you, consider these questions:

1. How large is your fleet?

2. Is your business seasonal?

3. How much operator turnover do you have?

4. Do you run specialized equipment?

  1. Accidents more likely:
    Most lift truck accidents happen because the operator did not pay attention. This leads to the most common type of operator accident: the lift truck tips over. A typical unloaded lift truck can weigh anywhere between 2,000 and 8,000 pounds. Even without a load, we’re talking about a heavy-duty piece of equipment. Operator training can help your employees prevent these avoidable accidents. It’s important to know the correct way to face the forks while traveling up or down a ramp. To avoid tip-overs, it’s crucial to know where the center of gravity is located when the truck is loaded. All things your employees, and yourself, will learn or re-learn in operator training.
  1. Product to be damaged:
    When an operator is trained in visibility and maneuverability and knows the vehicle’s capacity and stability, you’ll have less damage and more product to sell. Operator Training will also train your employees in the importance of keeping your warehouse clean. Keeping lift trucks properly maintained, clearing debris off the floor and having adequate lighting are all important factors in maintaining product quality and safe working conditions.
  1. Unprofessional:
    Not only is it the law that operators go through training, they will feel more valued as employees knowing their employer is concerned about their safety and health. Operator training will help your warehouse work smoothly. It creates an environment where your employees practice safety and legality and diminishes improper material handling practices.
  1. Not safe for operator and others:
    Last but not least, operator training can help protect your employees. Learn the travel safety rules. Know that riders are not allowed. Honk the horn at intersections. Although these seem like common sense, it’s important to always keep these regulations in mind in order to keep a safe and efficient warehouse.

Raymond Handling Concepts Corporation uses the Raymond Corporation’s lift truck operator training program, Safety On The Move. It has helped employers protect their people, equipment, and materials since its introduction in 1991. Studies have shown that effective operator training, such as that provided by the Safety On The Move program, can help improve your bottom line. It can assist you in reducing accidents, equipment downtime, product damage and increase worker productivity and customer satisfaction. The Safety On The Move program can help you comply with the OSHA requirement that all operators of industrial lift trucks be trained and certified in the use of their equipment before being allowed to operate it as part of their job. Raymond’s Safety On The Move program can also assist you in complying with applicable lift truck operator training requirements in Canada and Mexico.

Get this Article as a printable White Paper

Subscribe to our Warehouse Innovator email list of industry professionals and we will will send this Article as a printable White Paper that you can share with colleagues, use as training materials, or keep in your professional library.
Click here