Powered industrial trucks, commonly called forklifts or lift trucks, are used in many industries, primarily to move materials. They can also be used to raise, lower, or remove large objects or a number of smaller objects on pallets or in boxes, crates, or other containers.

Powered industrial trucks can either be ridden by the operator or controlled by a walking operator. Over-the-road haulage trucks and earth-moving equipment that has been modified to accept forks are not considered powered industrial trucks.

It is a violation of Federal law for anyone under 18 years of age to operate a forklift or for anyone over 18 years of age who is not properly trained and certified to do so.

Employers must ensure that each powered industrial truck operator is competent to operate a powered industrial truck safely, as demonstrated by the successful completion of the training and evaluation specified in OSHA regulations.

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