The Association of Industrial Truck Trainers (AITT) has highlighted important new testing standards for counterbalance and reach truck operator courses following updates made by the Accrediting Bodies Association for Workplace Transport (ABA).
The new standards will now include stand-on reach trucks (D3) and stand-on counterbalance trucks (B4).
Some changes have been made to increase safety: for example, audible warnings (horns) are now required as a mandatory item within pre-use checks.
Other amendments have been made to improve clarity. These include the reference "eye level" which has been replaced by "medium level".
Operators are also being given the opportunity to correct manoeuvres to encourage better recognition of mistakes. Candidates are now permitted to make an adjustment during the chicane segment of their test, without being penalised. This was due to feedback from instructors stating it is more beneficial to allow a candidate to stop and correct their position, rather than risk colliding with the chicane and being penalised further.
The amended testing standards took effect last week and will be mandatory from 1 April. Any tests held on or after this latter date that do not use the new standards will be invalid.
AITT managing director Adam Smith says: "Industrial equipment is always evolving, so testing standards are regularly reviewed and improved where necessary. The testing standards for counterbalance and reach trucks have been updated to align with modern requirements and legislation, and training providers will need to familiarise themselves with the latest test papers. They don't want to risk using out-of-date documents.
"A key benefit of becoming an accredited training provider is having access to current materials, and, in turn, using an accredited provider gives candidates assurance that they are receiving the best possible training in line with up-to-date standards."