Forklifts are used to move heavy objects in warehouses, construction sites, agriculture, and other places. You must first know how to drive and operate a forklift safely before you can become a forklift instructor and teach others how to do so. You must be trained and certified in accordance with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standards to operate a forklift in the United States. Anyone under the age of 18 who is not trained and certified to operate a forklift is breaking the law in the United States. To teach others how to use a forklift, no formal certification is required.
Forklift trainers must follow OSHA guidelines. “All operator training and evaluation shall be conducted persons who have the knowledge, training, and experience to train powered industrial truck operators and evaluate their competence,” according to the organization’s forklift training standard. You already have the foundation you’ll need to work as a forklift instructor if you currently drive a forklift for a job or have in the past and are still certified.
Teaching abilities will also assist you in becoming a forklift instructor. Train-the-trainer classes for forklift trainers can help you learn how to teach others how to operate a forklift and gain teaching skills. Forklift manufacturers, your local OSHA office, online, and in the yellow pages of your phone book are all good places to look for these classes. Attending train-the-trainer classes can help you determine whether someone you’ve trained has mastered the skills needed to operate a forklift on their own. The courses will show you how to assess the driving abilities of employees you train and how to certify them.
If you want to become a forklift instructor, check with your employer to see if forklift training is required. If there is a need for people to be trained, you might consider volunteering to help put together a training and certification program at your workplace. You can also inquire about job openings for forklift instructors with companies that provide train-the-trainer classes. As a forklift operator, having current certification and a clean safety record will help you find work training others to operate forklifts. It will also help you become a forklift instructor if you have good overall communication and speaking skills, as well as leadership ability.