22 May 2024

Better forklift awareness saves lives

A pedestrian walking in an area where forklifts are active

Workplace transport training provider Mentor is urging the sector to train everyone working around forklifts. Crucially, that includes those who are most at risk of injury: pedestrians.

To tackle issues before they arise and improve site safety, Mentor has announced it has recently launched a Forklift Awareness e-learning course that is already being used by businesses across the UK. The course is designed for organisations who want to improve their safety culture, which is something everyone working there can play a part in.

Adam Smith, Mentor’s Commercial Director, explains: “Our Forklift Awareness course is not only aimed at experienced operators but, crucially, those who work in the vicinity of forklifts. They may not know the dangers, but they are the ones most likely to be seriously injured in an accident. In fact, recent RIDDOR statistics show that 43% of incidents involving a forklift truck were impacts with a third person* — be it workers performing tasks nearby, supervisors, or delivery drivers.

“The course targets behaviour at the root of unsafe practice, addressing lack of awareness, complacency and bad habits. There are pressing matters such as segregation that directly impact those working around forklift trucks, which is why the safety of pedestrians is a constant theme throughout the course.”

The company says to make training more accessible, the Forklift Awareness course is delivered in an e-learning format that allows delegates to undergo their training online at a time and place that suits them. It takes approximately one hour to complete, making it ideal for onboarding new employees required to work in the vicinity of forklift operations, or simply a periodic safety reminder, for both operators and pedestrians. The course is approved by AITT, and contains four modules, with short quizzes throughout to encourage engagement and confirm understanding.

“The course is hard-hitting,” adds Smith. “It contains some dramatisations as well as real-life CCTV footage. Ultimately, we want delegates to realise why they need to take safety seriously, as it could save lives. Those who drive forklifts are given a sharp reminder why forklift safety fundamentals are so important, and pedestrians are shown the risks so they can help to keep themselves and their colleagues safe. Taking this for granted could prevent someone from making it home safely at the end of the day. As always, the goal is to reduce the risk of accidents and serious injuries as far as we can. This course has been designed to ensure everyone working around forklifts is as prepared as possible.”

*www.nationalforkliftsafetyday.co.uk/2020-pedestrian-impact

Company info: Mentor FLT Training