Importance of Forklift Driver Training
A blog site of our Principal Consultant, Major Frank TK Tan, PMP (Perak), PJK (Selangor), on his thoughts and years of understanding in the world of Occupational Safety and Health.
Material Handling Equipment Operators in short Forklift Operators plays an important role in the move of goods and loads in every part of the industry. With its key function of moving loads from one point to another, and in certain industry where the logistical movements is ever moving, we have to accept the fact that hazards are very prone in all these sectors. Some of the major accidents can include crash fatality and the most common in all forklift driver accidents include forklift tipping over and without proper training, every forklift operators will tend to hop out of the forklift which is a point blank – NOT ALLOWED action. Most of the death or major accidents in forklift operations are when the forklift operators hop out when a forklift tips over.
The importance of forklift driver training has shown its importance over the years especially in Malaysia when it was recently added to the Schedule of Factories and Machinery (Persons-in-Charge) (Amendment) Regulations 2014 of the Factory and Machinery Act 1967. With this in place, all organizations in Malaysia which has forklift operators must conduct a competency course for its forklift operators before being allowed to operate the said machine.
Apart from the point of law, an organization must admit that forklifts though it looks small is a dangerous machine. According to SOCSO forklift accidents contribute one of the highest in their members’ claims onto the funds notably in the area of occupational safety whilst a smaller percentage is in the area of occupational health. Besides that, with the hidden costs the typical organization will usually look at only the direct costs from and when an accident has occurred. However, we must always remember that when a forklift accident occurs, the costs that we see is actually only the tip of the iceberg which means there are actually more costs in the mishaps of a forklift accident. This includes increase in insurance premium, loss man hours, loss in operation lead time, lost in customer trust which are crucial in the revolving customer business and long term profitability of the company.
Therefore, we must agree that forklift safety training and/ or forklift driver training is important and plays a crucial role in the overall organization setup. Further to that, when there is a drop in accident rates in relation to Material Handling Equipment or forklifts, the morale of the organization is also boosted which is due to the continuous exercise provided by the organization in the areas of forklift driver training.