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How Do I Choose the Best Forklift Course?

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  • Written By: Mary McMahon
  • Edited By: Nancy Fann-Im
  • Last Modified Date: 09 November 2016
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A forklift course should meet any certification requirements operators need to handle forklifts legally in their area, which is an important consideration to think about when preparing to take such a course. Other factors can include the type of training, cost, location, and timing. Usually courses are available year round, and it is sometimes possible to schedule a course at a time not typically offered if there are enough interested students. The training company can provide information about this option.

Some nations regulate forklift operators and require specific training and certifications. In these regions, the forklift course should meet those standards. It is advisable to contact the government agency responsible for setting and enforcing standards to get information to compare with the stated course specifications. In some nations, this agency will provide a list of approved trainers to allow personnel to locate a course that will meet their needs.

A forklift course can train an operator or a staff member who will be responsible for training operators on site. Train-the-trainer courses, as they are known, have different course materials and are available to students with an existing forklift certification. It can also be possible to take a forklift course that provides certification in proper forklift use and training in how to teach other personnel at the same time. This dual forklift operator/trainer course may be useful for people who want to become supervisors or trainers.

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Courses can vary in cost, and it may be helpful to ask for information from several companies to get an idea of the range of costs available. Location may be important as well; some forklift courses are available online and can be taken at leisure from home or work. Others require students to travel to a location for their training. This can add to the cost for the forklift operator or a sponsoring employer, as it may be necessary to stay in a hotel and cover food during the training. The timing could also be inconvenient.

The forklift course may provide an initial certification, but it may also be necessary to renew. Trained operators should ask about when certifications expire and how to renew them. It may be possible to take a short course or test to demonstrate competency, instead of needing to retake the whole course. It is advisable to keep the documentation on successful completion of the forklift course, to have it available in the event of any disputes or questions in the future.

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