Thorough Examination is a Legal Requirement
Thorough Examination for forklift trucks is roughly equivalent to the MOT for cars – a mandatory check to ensure that the mechanical parts of your forklift are in safe working order. It is not the same as scheduled maintenance and is required, regardless of whether your truck has been recently serviced.
However, there remains a great deal of uncertainty around these inspections, with many forklifts being insufficiently inspected. Many truck inspections will only cover the lifting mechanism, leaving critical safety components, such as brakes and tyres, completely unchecked. Such inspections leave trucks unsafe and illegal and leave employers legally exposed.
In order to address this confusion, the material handling industry's leading Member organisations, FLTA and BITA, worked together to create Consolidated Fork Truck Services (CFTS) - an organisation dedicated to creating a clear industry standard in Thorough Examination, ensuring lift trucks of all kinds are properly inspected, safe, and legal.
- Thorough Examination must be carried out by a Competent Person.
- Thorough Examination must be carried out at least every 12 months. Depending on the truck and application, attachments, and intensity of work, more regular inspection may be required.
- Inspections must cover both lifting (LOLER) and vehicular (PUWER) components.
- The employer of the truck operator is responsible for ensuring truck has been examined.
- In cases of short term hire, the hire company is responsible, though the operator's employer must satisfy themselves that the truck carries a valid Throrough Examination certificate.
- Trucks leaving an owner's possession - whether temporarily or permanently - must have a valid Report of Thorough Examination
For more information, visit the FAQs section of the CFTS website.
Look for the CFTS Marque
Only companies that are officially accredited to CFTS are allowed to use the distinctive “Kitemark”. You can rest assured that any Report of Thorough Examination bearing the official CFTS mark has been carried out by an experienced, accredited examiner in accordance with stringent standards and quality procedures.
Likewise, the CFTS sticker on a forklift truck shows that it has received a genuinely Thorough Examination, satisfying both LOLER 98 and PUWER 98 regulations. Without this mark, a truck, company or examiner may or may not meet safe, legal standards – crucially, there’s no way to tell.