Forklift Certification and OSHA Requirements

Obtaining forklift certification is important no matter what kind of forklift you will be operating. Forklifts operators require training and certification due to the possible safety hazards when operating this equipment.

Depending on your area the company you work for is ultimately responsible for forklift training and necessary certification, and they’re going to be supervised by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

OSHA requires that the employees who will be operating equipment such as forklifts, be certified. What they suggest for training personnel is that anyone who has specific experience and knowledge to train, provides the hands on training and also evaluates the operators proficiency with the equipment.

Depending on how comprehensive your boss wants your training to be, forklift training to get the forklift certification is often as short as an 8 hr shift. Your training may include watching safety videos plus a short written test and a hands-on driver competency test. Most of the time the boss will carry out the training based on the specific equipment and the typical work related conditions that you will be dealing with on the job.

If you’re reading this and are concerned because you are out of work, don’t be. A lot of times an employer will provide training and accreditation after you are hired — but it may also be gained on your own. There are many website offering certification and it can now be obtained on the Internet. Just remember, forklift certification does not guarantee employment.

A lot of times companies want experience and a thoroughly clean safety record. Nevertheless, obtaining certification all on your own will show motivation and dedication. Employers pay quite a bit of money for their staff to get certified, so if you do it on your own then you probably just saved them cash. It also looks good on your application or perhaps resume.

Regardless of whether get certification on your own or through an employer, OSHA recommends the following plan outline:

An introduction to the fork lift

This will be a broad overview of the equipment including different types of forklifts, features and the mechanics of a fork lift.


The next part will deal with safety as well as load handling and driving conditions and surroundings.


The final part will be a written test.

Forklift certification is a great tool to have when you’re looking for a work, especially with the economy in the state it is in today. There is a need for fork lift operators in nearly all states and you can get a job relatively easy if you show initiative and get trained and certified.

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