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How thorough are your examinations?

'Inspections' may not meet legal requirement for Thorough Examination. Fork lift industry leaders have warned that some truck users may be unintentionally breaking the law by confusing 'inspections' with legally obligatory Thorough Examinations.

“A variety of 'inspections' can be carried out on your fork lift trucks by different people but not all of them fulfil the law's requirement for Thorough Examination,” says Brian Tyrer, Chairman of Consolidated Fork Truck Services (CFTS).

CFTS is the organisation founded as a collaboration between materials handling's two major industry trade associations – the Fork Lift Truck Association (FLTA) and the British Industrial Truck Association (BITA) – to develop and administer that industry's national accreditation scheme for Thorough Examination.

“Service engineers, insurance inspectors and specialist inspection companies might all inspect your equipment and give you an inspection report. Whether that document counts as a Report of Thorough Examination is a vitally important question that the user must ask,” Mr Tyrer continues.

“An inspection as part of a preventive maintenance scheme or scheduled service is not a Thorough Examination. Other inspections carried out by a variety of specialists may, or may not, be Thorough Examinations.”

CFTS advises truck users to ask the inspector whether the inspection is a Thorough Examination in accordance with the LOLER 98 legislation. They should ask to see a copy of the report form – and look for the words 'Report of Thorough Examination' on the top of it. If that is not clearly specified in the documentation they should be suspicious of its validity.

CFTS points out that certainty in complying fully with the law can be assured by obtaining Thorough Examinations through companies accredited to the CFTS Thorough Examination scheme. Those companies are obliged under their stringent procedural code to provide: a Report of Thorough Examination complying fully with LOLER 98; a checklist specifying what has been checked and recording any comments made; a certificate to keep with the truck's documents; and a sticker, affixed to the truck, to show the month and year when the next Thorough Examination will be due.

“We have heard comments that the CFTS scheme is trying to establish a gold standard for Thorough Examination – as if that was a bad thing,” says Brian Tyrer. “As far as we are concerned the standard we have set is something to be proud of, and we will continue to insist that there is only one way that a Thorough Examination should be carried out: the right way.”

For further information on the fork lift truck industry's accredited Thorough Examination scheme, and to find your nearest CFTS accredited company, please contact:
CFTS Ltd, 5-7 High Street, Sunninghill, Ascot, Berkshire, SL5 9NQ.
Tel: 01276 502930.
Fax: 01276 502930.
Eml mail@thoroughexamination.org.
Or visit the CFTS website www.thoroughexamination.org.

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