What official training is required to operate a Powered Pallet Truck or is familiarisation only required?

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Under PUWER regulations it is the employer’s responsibility to ensure that staff receive suitable and sufficient training. Since that has been codified by the ABA (Accrediting Bodies Association) it is the benchmark against which the employer will be judged in the case of an incident that is investigated by the HSE. And the penalties for failing to train are severe. One supermarket giant was fined £1 million for ‘providing insufficient training’ when an employee lost two toes in an accident involving a powered pallet truck.

It is also essential for you to maintain up to date risk assessments and training records and to ensure that adequate refresher training is provided, especially if there is a change of machinery or the application has been subject to changes.  Please do not be under the misapprehension that there is no legal requirement to provide formal training; there most certainly is.

The HSE has updated its Approved Code of Practice to clarify that LOLER applies to high-lift pallet trucks, both manual and powered, that can raise the forks above 300mm. The approved code of practice can be downloaded free of charge from www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/books/l113.htm.

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