Attaining an RTITB Forklift Certificate
Obtaining your forklift certificate is the ultimate aim for you if you are looking to further your career within this industry. It is the mark of someone who can not only drive a forklift but drive it securely, efficiently and in a professional manner.
Once your RTITB certificate in Forklift Operation is attained, you have it for life with no expiration date (although the National Operators Registration does).
So why refresh your certificate
Refreshing an already attained forklift certificate is a good way to maintain good working practices as well as highlighting bad habits that may have been picked up prior to the last course.
Some certificate holders may only use a forklift occasionally and so refreshing the existing knowledge base is a great way to stave of skill degradation.
Many companies may ask new drivers who already have an RTITB Certificate to re test so as to familiarise the delegates with a slightly different machine or environment.
Whatever the reason, maintaining a consistent refresher schedule helps breed safe driver practises as well as rooting out complacency in driving a Forklift.
As an employer why is it important?
As an employer you have a duty to ensure your staff are suitably trained. The decision to retrain and refresh is the responsibility of the employer as stated in the Health & Safety At Work Act (1974) and Regulation 9 of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (1998) which dictates 'adequate information, instruction and training' is provided for all employees.
In addition to the published guidance further information can be found in the Approved Code of Practice for Rider Operated Lift Trucks (L117), which has special legal status in that if you are prosecuted for a breach of health and safety law and it is proved that you did not follow the relevant provisions of the code, you will need to show that you have complied with the duty or law in some other way or a court may find you at fault.
It is best practice to consider a gap of between three to five years, depending on the truck type, tasks, environment and frequency of work/risks. Some companies identify this as an issue and provide refresher training more often than this.
Workers may also need refresher training if:
- There has been an unsafe incident or 'near miss'
- Awareness of dangerous driving
- Operatives becoming disabled