forklift training

Certified Forklift Safety Training Classes in Oakland, CA.

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Does OSHA require powered industrial forklift operators to have a valid driver’s license?

Federal OSHA has no requirement that a forklift operator have a valid driver’s license. OSHA does require that every forklift operator be trained and certified to operate the powered industrial truck in the workplace, and that the operator’s performance be evaluated on the provisions of 1910.178(l)(3) every three years. The employer must have a record documenting that the driver has successfully completed the training. That is the only operating “license” required by OSHA.

Certified Forklift Safety Training Classes in Oakland, CA.

Is a vision/hearing test required before an employee may operate a forklift?

Federal OSHA’s powered industrial truck standard does not specifically address vision/hearing requirements for operators. However, even though Federal OSHA doesn’t specifically address it in the regulation, there are obviously some potential concerns and safety issues and these need to be evaluated in light of the specific operations.

In fact, OSHA has issued a letter of interpretation stating that an employer must determine if full vision is mandatory for the operations and advises that appropriate medical personnel be consulted. (Reference: October 20, 1976 OSHA Letter of Interpretation, which was edited in 2000.)

And, OSHA has issued other interpretations addressing both visually and hearing impaired potential forklift operators. In general, OSHA states that it considers physical impairments on a case-by-case basis. If the employer can show that a physically impaired employee would be a danger to himself and other employees when operating equipment such as a forklift, the employer has the right to not allow that employee to become a forklift operator. If the employer knew this fact, but allowed the employee to operate the vehicle, OSHA could cite under the General Duty Clause, which guarantees all employees a safe and healthful workplace – free of known hazards.

How much do forklift drivers make?

It is difficult to find specific information on salaries for forklift drivers. According to Career Explorer, The average salary for a forklift driver in California is about $35,460 per year.

What are my next steps?

Unsure of what steps you need to take? Brand new? Just need a refresher? We can help. Sign up for a forklift training class here, learn how to get forklift certified, or give us a call if you would like to talk through your options.

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