forklift truck operator of the year regional finals. The regional finals of the first national RTITB* driver training competition were held at Barloworld Handling's West Bromwich training centre between the 30th June and 4th July. Barloworld Handling, which is one of the largest driver training providers in the country and Sumo Glove, a leading manufacturer of safety equipment are supporting the event which aims to promote best practice and raise operator standards.
From an original database of some 100,000 registered forklift truck operators, national accreditation body the RTITB shortlisted some 30,000 registered operators who passed their test with less than 25 penalty points and scored 90% or above on the theory test. The first round of the competition was an online theory and hazard perception test with the top eight competitors from each region going through to compete in the regional finals at Barloworld.
Competitors from England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales endured a series of skills tests supervised by RTITB instructors who marked each competitor according practical driving skills and safety awareness around what some competitors described as a “wickedly difficult course”. The top two competitors from each region won cash rewards of £100 and £50 and qualified for the national final which is being held on the 26th September at the RTITB headquarters in Telford. The top prize in the final is a Ford Fiesta Car.
Organisers were pleased to see two young ladies qualify for the regional finals. Sarah Paskin who is self employed and lives in Telford and Sarah Galliant from Redruth both acquitted themselves very well in the practical tests. The competition was “nerve racking but exciting” said Ms Galliant, however all competitors expressed they had enjoyed the event.
During the competition, competitors drove new electric Hyster forklifts supplied by Barloworld Handling who will also supply Hyster trucks for the final. Barloworld's training centre in West Bromwich was made available exclusively all week for the regional finals. Garry Fillingham, National Driver Training Manager for Barloworld Handling said “Barloworld is committed to improving the standards of operator training and we are delighted to be supporting the RTITB and Sumo Glove in this year's national operator of the year competition”.
Barloworld Handling trains some 12,000 operators a year and has 6 training schools nationally. The company employs 24 RTITB accredited instructors and training courses can be held on site or at Barloworld's facilities. Training courses are available across all types of mechanical handling equipment and for all levels from novice to Instructor level. Barloworld also runs a series of awareness courses for supervisors and managers and can advise companies on any issue relating to training and safety of forklift trucks.
Visit www.barloworld.co.uk for further information.