Operating forklifts may look easy, but it’s not as simple as it appears. Those who have mastered it spent the time to learn the ropes and develop the ability to operate the equipment as if it were a part of their bodies. Mistakes can create serious consequences, especially when handling heavy and delicate loads.
Precise equipment operation skills are a must for certain fields such as the logistics and shipping industry. Thankfully, there are companies that provide the necessary training to prepare competent professional forklift operators. You can find providers of FLT Training in Sheffield or other cities in the UK. They usually offer training at at least three different levels: novice, existing/current operator, and refresher.
The novice programme is intended for those who have little to no experience in operating a forklift but (preferably) have been driving a car or other four-wheeled vehicle for some time. It seeks to instill the basic operating skill set and acquaint drivers with the safety code for operators and the knowledge regarding maintaining lift truck stability. For the practical training component, the programme provides a thorough introduction to the equipment, control and instruments, the operation of the forklift, hydraulic controls, and maintenance. For the operation training, everything is covered, from the starting and steering of the truck to the handling of laden and unladen pallets, loading and unloading, stacking and de-stacking, and the maneuvering of the truck on ramps and inclines. This programme usually has a duration of 3 to 5 days.
Existing driver programme
The training programme intended for those who are already driving forklifts takes around 1 to 3 days to complete. It’s similar to the novice training, consisting of theoretical and practical training components. Its main thrust is to teach forklift operators the best ways to do things. It provides guidance on the best practices and most efficient methods for picking, moving, and stacking loads. Many of those who operate forklifts may have the experience and decent skills, but they may have developed bad habits that need to be corrected. At the end of the programme, the instructor administers a practical test of operating skills as well as a test for undertaking a pre-use inspection of the equipment.
As the phrase implies, the refresher training is meant for those who have been operating forklifts for a long time but have stopped for some time. Hence, they may require a reorientation to regain familiarity with the controls and the experience of how it is to operate a forklift. The instructor re-educates the trainees on maneuvering the equipment, stacking and de-stacking, as well as the process for doing daily check-ups for maintenance. A practical test is also conducted at the end of the programme to find out if the operator is ready to go back to work.
Forklift training is important to ensure the competence of the lift operators. The operation of a forklift may look simple and repetitive, but errors on the part of the operator can lead to accidents that may not only injure people but also harm businesses.