From manufacturing to distribution to any company with a warehouse, any industry with a need to get things from point A to point B depends on the tried and true forklift. And you know what that means? All those industries need forklift drivers! In other words, getting a forklift certification opens up a lot of doors for employment opportunities. So, just how do you go about getting forklift certified? Let’s take a look:
The Forklift Certification Process
Getting your forklift certification, also referred to as a forklift license, is a process as simple as 1,2,3. Complete these 3 steps and you’ll have fulfilled all the requirements you need:
- Formal Instruction
- Hands-On Training
If you’re worried that it sounds a bit daunting, this 3-part process takes less time than you might think — just a few days are needed to go from class to training to holding your license. Here’s what the individual phases entail:
Step 1: Formal Instruction for Forklift Certification
To get forklift certified you must take a course that is compliant with the standards established by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). You can find these courses online or offered at certain onsite locations like forklift dealerships or technical colleges. If you are already employed and looking to enhance your skillset (and thus your paycheck!), ask your employer if forklift certification courses are offered through the company.
In this phase, you will learn all about the various types of forklifts and not only how to drive them, but also how to inspect and maintain them, as well as how to load and unload, refuel, use forklift attachments, maneuver in small spaces and navigate different surfaces. Most importantly, you will learn the hazards of operating a forklift as well as the safety measures and precautions to take to ensure your own and everyone else’s safety.
Step 2: Hands-On Training for Forklift Certification
Once you’ve completed your instruction course and passed your exam, you can move on to the next step — hands-on training. This stage of your certification provides practical experience and is typically included with your course instruction, or may be offered at your workplace.
During this phase, a trainer will perform a demonstration and you will then be expected to perform it yourself immediately after. Some of the things that will be covered include:
- visual and operational checks
- basic operation procedures
- and general safety.
On real equipment, you will practice driving in tight spaces and on inclines, loading and unloading, inspecting, driving with and without cargo, and more. All the while, you will be evaluated on your performances and how well you apply what you have learned, which brings us to the final step…
Step 3: Forklift Evaluation and Certification
After you’ve put in the course work and hands-on practice, your trainer will evaluate your performances in both the classroom and on the equipment, then determine if you are forklift driving ready. If you’ve passed the class and have shown you are a capable and competent driver, you will be officially certified and given your forklift license.
It’s important to note, however, that you will need to be recertified every three years, and sooner if you have any safety issues or mishaps, or if you need to operate a different type of forklift.
Congratulations, You’re Forklift Certified!
Once you’ve obtained a forklift certification, you’re ready to get out there and get jobs done. But being forklift certified isn’t the only thing that can help you snag a job or promotion. Set yourself up for success by using a Forklift Wrecker attachment — a powerful tool that attaches to forklifts and provides added safety and convenience. Give our team a call or contact us online to learn more about how our Forklift Wrecker can make your job easier!
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