The Benefits of Being a Certified Forklift Operator

October 10, 2022 12:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

There are many reasons why being a certified forklift operator is essential for those working in areas that require forklift operation. Although it might seem like anyone who can drive can hop on a forklift and get the job done, safety and cost considerations make it crucial for many in the trade to obtain proper forklift certification.

Do I have to be forklift certified?

Getting a forklift operator certification doesn’t just benefit bosses — it can be a great career move for anyone working in a trade or occupation that requires operating a forklift.

To answer this question, let’s look at the OSHA forklift certification requirements. According to, employees must be certified in forklift operation before operating a forklift. Even if you were previously certified in forklift operation at another job, you’ll have to complete the certification at your new place of employment before you can start using the forklift.

Forklift certification might seem like a hassle, especially if you’ve already gone through forklift training at a former employer or certification program. Still, forklift certifications are important to ensure that everyone in the workplace is safe. It’s a precaution that can take some time upfront while preventing you from losing time later from work-related injuries or other issues arising from operating a forklift without a certification.

If you have been forklift certified at the employer where you used a forklift in the last three years, you won’t have to worry about getting recertified. If it’s been three or more years since you were last forklift certified, or you have changed employers, you’ll need to complete a new forklift certification to stay current and meet OSHA standards.

As points out, a forklift certification can also help you get employment in a field that uses forklifts. What’s more, it can help you keep employment since you’ll be less prone to employment-terminating accidents that would limit future prospects.

Why should employees be forklift certified?

Employees should be forklift certified as a safety precaution. Beyond general safety, making sure employees are forklift certified will save you money if you are an employer because of the limited injuries and liability. If your employees are not certified forklift operators, you run the risk of legal consequences.

Without the proper certification, employees operating forklifts and their employers remain at risk of hurting others in the workplace and beyond — sometimes even causing death and disability. This means that employers and employees without proper certification could have to pay out large sums in fees. While getting a forklift certification might seem like a small thing, not doing it can have great repercussions. 

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