Are your inspections being rushed?
24 November 2022
CFTS IS asking employers to think about how long each Thorough Examination of their lifting equipment is taking - and to question whether the inspections are thorough enough to assure legal compliance and truck safety.
"We do hear stories that these vital and complex safety checks are being completed in as little as 15 minutes," said Geoff Martin, CFTS chairman. "Typically, it should take a minimum of 45 minutes for a 1.5 tonne three-wheel electric forklift. Anything less and the inspection could have been rushed. As a truck’s complexity increases, so does its inspection. A conventional telehandler, for example, might take 3 hours to inspect properly. Ultimately, it takes as long as it takes to get the job done right."
Unlike what is provided by some inspection providers, a CFTS Thorough Examination follows a quality-controlled standardised testing process. This includes performing physical examinations on the lifting parts of the truck in accordance with LOLER, as well as on non-lifting parts, such as brakes and steering, under PUWER.
"CFTS Thorough Examinations are not just visual," added Martin. "They include accurate, replicable measurements. For example, a CFTS-accredited inspector will jack up the truck to examine the steering and linkages and will use a purpose-designed chain gauge to measure chain wear rather than just judging by eye or using a tape measure.
"A CFTS Thorough Examination takes time, but it’s worth it. So, if someone tells you it can be done in 15 minutes, ask yourself just how thorough this inspection is likely to be? While it may fulfil the bare minimum requirements of the HSE, is that all the assurance you want for the condition of your equipment?
"After all, when it comes to worker’s safety and legal compliance, there’s no room for guesswork. A poor choice of Thorough Examination provider could result in a heavy fine, or worse, a horrific accident and prosecution. By choosing a CFTS-accredited provider you can rest assured that an in-depth Thorough Examination will be conducted to give you complete peace of mind," he concluded.