Forklift Operator

Course Overview

The overall objectives of the course are discussed with the trainees, placing an emphasis on individual operator responsibilities. The shift in liability from the company to the operator is stressed for those who are trained and obtain a license. The operators will be trained in safety precautions, avoiding accidents, proper material handling techniques, and protecting equipment and stock.


  • 4-6 hours on site training and instruction.

Course Topics

Getting to Know the Forklift

Learning the unique capabilities of the forklift. Restricted view, rear wheel steering, stability, limited driving space, and exercising extreme caution due to pedestrian traffic are covered in this section.

Types of Material Handling Equipment

Walk or Rider Pallet Transporters, narrow aisle equipment such as reach trucks, order pickers, turret or swing reach trucks and side loaders. The counter balance truck is then discussed in detail, concentrating on the handling capabilities, maneuvering, components, forks, mast, drive and steer axles, and load backrest extensions.

The Pre-Shift Inspection

The walk around inspection and in depth pre-shift inspection are two of the most important daily routines that must be logged and maintained. Not only can this prevent damage, accidents and expensive repairs, it can also protect the company from liability in the event of injury. Proper techniques for performing the inspection, assigning a specific person, reporting problems, and updating the log book are responsibilities that all forklift operators must know in order to avoid accidents or injury.

Battery Handling

Using an electric forklift, and proper instructions for changing and maintaining the battery are relayed.

Extracts from the Occupational Health & Safety Act

Topics include (section 1.2) who may use material handling equipment (ie. "competent person"), Regulation 49; lifting and stacking, Regulation 55; examinations and safety equipment, trained operators, and precautions, Regulation 60;obstructed view, Regulation 61; immobilizing equipment, Regulation 62, how to immobilize equipment, and Regulation 63; maximum capacity ratings and usage.

The Elevating Assembly

Definitions are given for collapsed height, free lift, full free lift, maximum fork height and overall extended height. As well, safe operating practices are covered in detail.

Load & Stability

Topics include: rear wheel steering, capacity, the stability triangle, centre of gravity, lateral stability, longitudinal stability, tipping axises, extended load centre, proper load placement, tilt and load centre distances, load composition and ramps and inclines.

Docks, Trucks & Trailers

Checking dock plates, making sure wheels are chocked, trailer jacks, floor condition and capacity, lighting, horn operation, height requirements.

Truck Positioning & Operation

Negotiating tight turns, pivot points, moving around obstacles, separation distances, handling pallets, driving in reverse.

Load & Pick Up Procedures

Squaring a load, setting forks to the correct height and position, aligning the mast, applying the brake, tilting the load, sounding the horn, backing up, and visibility requirements.

Load & Stacking Procedures

Squaring the load, lifting the load, braking, tilting the load, leveling the load, proper stacking procedures, letting the load settle, fork positioning, traveling position.

Operations Video

Classifications of fork trucks, fire safety designations, pre-shift inspections, data plates and capacities, reporting problems, load centers and stability, lifting, loading, stacking. Three point suspension system, high center of gravity, stability triangle, maximum capacity under normal operating conditions, weight shifts, rear steering, rear end swing, sounding the horn, safety precautions, surface conditions, inclines, crossing rail road tracks and other gradients, weather conditions and slippery surfaces, picking up a load, setting a load, public carriers, parking and immobilizing.

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