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Forklifts Training Kit - Instructor's Guide

Purpose of this training module

Instructor's Guide for Printing
(80 KB DOC)

You may use this slide presentation to comply with the training requirements of the DOSH Forklifts regulations found in the Core Rules. (WAC 296-863). Click here to read the training requirements in the rule, or you can read them at the end of this guide.

The topics covered in this module are those required in the rule. However, you may use different materials that cover these topics if you believe that they will be more effective.

Getting Ready

1. Resources and materials you will need:

  • A quiet room with basic accommodations for comfort of participants
  • A copy of the presentation (computer slide show, overheads, or handouts)
  • Overhead projector or computer and projector for PowerPoint presentation
  • Copies of the handouts (optional)
  • Certificates to hand out to the class as proof of attendance (optional)
  • A training roster to pass around for your records (recommended)

2. Review the presentation materials.

Take the time to look through each of the slides and read the instructor's notes that come with each slide.  If you have any questions after looking through these materials, you can contact your local L&I office (see page 3) for assistance before you give your first presentation.

3. Customizing the presentation.

  • The information contained in this module applies to all workplaces. However, you are also required to include provide hands-on training on the forklift(s) the employees will be operating. Just using the training module without the workplace-specific information will not satisfy all training requirements.
  • If you have PowerPoint on your computer, additional information is easily added to the PowerPoint version after downloading.  The PowerPoint version can be modified, but modification that changes the essential meaning or deletes information may not meet the training requirements.
  • If you use the PDF version, the slides cannot be changed, but you can provide the workplace specific information orally, on overhead transparencies or as paper handouts.

4. Prepare the materials and schedule the class

  • If you have a computer video projection system, all you need to do is check to make sure the presentation works and make copies of the handouts.
  • If you plan to use an overhead projector, print the slides out on transparencies.  The PDF version will print quicker and use less printer memory. The slides will be clearer if they are printed in color.  If you don't have a color printer, your local print or copy store can print out color transparencies for you.
  • Schedule the class for a date and time convenient to most people.  If you want many employees and supervisors to participate, try not to make groups larger then 15 attendees.

Presenting the Training

Give the presentation

You can use your own words rather than just reading from the script.  You can also make three-slide-per-page handouts of the training.

Ask for participation

It also helps to involve the audience as much as possible by asking them questions and getting them to talk about their own jobs, their use of forklifts, and any suggestions they may have on how to operate forklifts safely.

Questions and answers

Answer any questions the best that you can.  Even if you don't have the technical knowledge to answer a lot of questions on forklift safety, you can still answer the important questions about the way that your company is addressing the potential safety hazards of operating forklifts.  If any questions on forklift safety are asked that you need help answering, you can contact the forklift manufacturer or your local L&I office listed on the following page.


Within a week or two of giving the training, you might want to take a few minutes to talk to some of the employees and supervisors to make sure they understood what was presented and how it applies to them. 

Getting help

If you have questions while preparing to give this presentation, or if questions come up during the presentation that you need help in answering, contact your local L&I office listed below for assistance:

City Telephone # Email address
Everett 425-290-1369
Tukwila 206-835-1065
Spokane 509-324-2543
Tacoma 253-596-3917
Kelso 360-575-6951
Wenatchee 509-886-6500

Forklift Training Regulations

WAC 296-863-60005
Make sure PIT operators are trained
You must:
Make sure employees successfully complete an operator training program before operating PITs. The only time a trainee can operate a PIT is:
- Under the direct supervision of a person who has the knowledge, training, and experience to train and evaluate operators
- When operating the PIT doesn't endanger the trainee or other employees.
Make sure training is done by you, or someone you designate, that has the knowledge, training, and experience to:
- Conduct the training
- Evaluate trainee competence.
Make sure your operator training program consists of:
- Formal instruction such as lecture and discussion, interactive computer learning, video tapes, and written material.
- Practical training such as demonstrations done by the trainer and practical exercises performed by trainees.
- Evaluation of trainee performance
Make sure the initial operator training program covers the subjects in Table 4, Required Training Topics.


Note:If an operator has previously received training specified in Table 4, Required Training Topics, additional training in that topic isn't required if:
- The training was appropriate to the PIT and working conditions in your workplace

    • and

- The employee has passed a PIT performance evaluation within the last 3 years.

 Table 4
Required Training Topics

Topics related to powered industrial truck

Topics related to your workplace

  • Operating instructions

Surface conditions where the PIT will be operated

Warnings and precautions for the types of PIT the operator will be authorized to operate

Composition of loads to be carried and load stability

Differences between the PIT and the automobile

Load manipulation, stacking, and unstacking

PIT controls and instrumentation: Where they are located, what they do, and how they work

Pedestrian traffic in areas where the PIT will be operated

Engine or motor operation

Narrow aisles and other restricted places where the PIT will be operated

Steering and maneuvering

Use of door opening and closing devices

  • Visibility (including restrictions due to loading)
  • Hazardous (classified) locations where the PIT will be operated

Fork and attachment adaptation, operation, and use limitations

  • Ramps and other sloped surfaces that could affect the PITs stability

PIT capacity

Closed environments and other areas where insufficient ventilation or poor PIT maintenance could cause a buildup of carbon monoxide or diesel exhaust

PIT stability

Other unique or potentially hazardous environmental conditions in the workplace that could affect safe operation

Any PIT inspection and maintenance that the operator will be required to perform




Charging and recharging of batteries


Operating limitations


Any other operating instructions, warnings, or precautions listed in the operator's manual for the types of PIT that the employee is being trained to operate


You must:
Keep written records of operator training and evaluations that include the following information:
- Name of the operator
- Date of the training
- Date of the evaluation
- Name of the person giving the training or evaluation.

WAC 296-863-60010
Retrain PIT operators as required
You must:
Provide PIT operators refresher training if any of the following occur:
- The operator is involved in an accident or near-miss incident
- The operator is seen operating the PIT in an unsafe manner
- An evaluation shows the operator isn't operating the PIT safely
- The operator is assigned to drive a different type or modified PIT
- Conditions in the workplace change that could affect safe operation of the PIT.


Note: Refresher training is required only in those topics where the operator has been found deficient.



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