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Forklift Training: Debunking 4 Common Misconceptions

Forklift Training: Debunking 4 Common Misconceptions

Oct 10 2023 at 11:57

Warehouses and construction sites alike depend on forklifts as essential tools. However, operating a forklift without receiving the necessary training and securing a forklift licence might result in accidents and expensive mistakes. Unfortunately, there are a few myths about forklift training that could endanger forklift operators as well as those working around them. To maintain safety and compliance in your workplace, we dispel four common misconceptions regarding forklift training.


Misconception 1: Training is a one-time occasion

Many companies incorrectly think that forklift training is something that only needs to be done once, and that after completing the initial course, an operator is good to go for the rest of their career. However, this belief is dangerous because safety regulations and technologies evolve over time.

Instead, forklift training should be a continuous process. To make sure that operators are up to speed with safety regulations and best practices, regular refresher training and updates are crucial. Such courses can also reinforce appropriate practices and address any undesirable habits that may have developed over time.

Furthermore, according to the Ministry of Manpower in Singapore, refresher training is mandatory once every three years on the operation of forklifts. And as for the operation of heavy forklifts above five tonnes, additional refresher training should be conducted to ensure operators’ competency.


Misconception 2: Experience trumps training

Some may argue that experience alone is sufficient to operate a forklift safely, but this is simply not true. Experience is unquestionably valuable, but a proper forklift certification course should always come first. Even seasoned operators are susceptible to developing bad habits or forgetting crucial safety procedures without proper training.

Forklift training complements experience by providing operators with a solid foundation in safety practices and industry standards. Additionally, it keeps operators abreast of the latest safety regulations and technological advancements. Experienced operators who receive certified proper training have a greater likelihood of avoiding mishaps and making informed decisions.


Misconception 3: Forklifts are not difficult to operate

One of the most pervasive misunderstandings regarding forklifts is that anyone can operate one without formal training since they are simple to use. This belief couldn’t be further from the truth – forklifts are powerful lifting equipment with the ability to cause serious damage and injury if mishandled.

In fact, operating a forklift requires a unique set of skills and knowledge. Proper training covers various aspects, including understanding the forklift’s controls, load capacity, stability, and safety procedures. To reduce the risk of accidents and maximise efficiency, it is essential to make sure that operators undergo thorough training.


Misconception 4: Training is time-consuming & costly

Due to perceived costs and time restrictions, several businesses are reluctant to invest in forklift training. They may believe that it is more efficient to put employees to work immediately rather than dedicating time and resources to training.

Without forklift or reach truck training and proper certification, driving a forklift or reach truck is illegal in Singapore. In 2018 alone, an unlicensed forklift driver was jailed for two weeks after pleading guilty to causing grievous hurt by performing a negligent act and running over a worker. In terms of medical costs, damaged equipment, and legal costs, accidents and injuries brought on by improper forklift operations can be significantly more expensive. Additionally, competent forklift operators are typically more productive, which can ultimately outweigh the cost of training.

While there is an initial cost associated with forklift training, the course is applicable for SkillsFuture funding at Wong Fong Academy (WFA). For more information, call us at 68633686.



Don’t fall for the misconceptions; it is essential that you prioritise forklift training in your workplace. Doing so will safeguard your workers and improve productivity and compliance throughout your company’s operations. When it comes to forklift operations, safety should always come first, and dispelling these widespread myths is an important first step.

For courses in Singapore involving forklift safety, occupational first aid, safe lifting operation, and more, do not hesitate to contact us today.