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Thorough Examination: Whose responsibility is it?

CFTS clarifies the duties of forklift owners and operators to check equipment.

CFTS — the body behind a UK national standard for the Thorough Examination of lift trucks — has addressed the confusion over whose responsibility it is to make sure that trucks have received regular inspections.

A Thorough Examination is a legal requirement, as every lift truck should be checked at least once every 12 months. It is vital for ensuring a safe, productive work environment.

“Every forklift should have a valid Thorough Examination report,” said Geoff Martin, CFTS Chairman.

“If you own the forklift or are hiring it for more than 12 months, it’s your responsibility to make sure an inspection is arranged, in accordance with the truck type and use. But if you are hiring a forklift for less than a year then it is the rental company that must ensure the vehicle receives a Thorough Examination.

“Nevertheless, as an employer, you have a duty of care to your employees. My advice would be to demand to see a current report. By insisting on seeing a copy of the truck’s Thorough Examination report you are fulfilling your obligations to confirm the equipment is fit for purpose.

“If you are investigated by the HSE and are deemed to be acting negligently then you could personally face a significant fine or even prison. And if one of your staff is injured — or killed — it’ll be you that will shoulder the responsibility and guilt.”

A CFTS Thorough Examination ensures all key lift truck components are expertly inspected, in compliance with LOLER and PUWER regulations. A CFTS-inspected truck will feature the distinctive CFTS logo — both on the paperwork and displayed prominently on the vehicle.

“The CFTS mark shows that the truck has been inspected to the highest standard,” added Geoff.

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