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OSHA Power Industrial Truck Operator Regulations

Material handling is a significant safety concern during the movement of products and materials. There are numerous opportunities for personal injury and or property damage if proper safe working procedures and precautions are not followed. A Powered Industrial Truck (PIT) is defined by OSHA as a mobile, power-driven vehicle used to carry, push, pull, lift, stack, or tier material. Motorized hand trucks and pallet trucks are also considered power industrial trucks. Employees required to operate powered industrial trucks must meet the following basic requirements prior to being considered to participate in PIT training:

  • No adverse vision problems that cannot be corrected by prescription glasses or contacts.
  • No adverse hearing loss that cannot be corrected with the use of a hearing aid.
  • No physical impairments that would impair safe operations of a power industrial truck.
  • No neurological disorders that would affect the operators' balance or consciousness
  • Not under prescription medication that would affect perception, vision, or physical abilities to operate a PIT.

Training for PIT Operators shall be conducted by a certified operator/contractor selected by the company. All certification training and evaluation must be completed before any operator is certified to operate a PIT. Employees shall only operate the type equipment for which they have been certified. Training shall contain a combination of formal instructions, practical training (demonstrations performed by the trainer and practical exercises performed by the trainee), and evaluation of the operator's performance. Training will cover the specific equipment to be operated, any special devices used (fork extensions, etc.), and be conducted on the type of surface(s) on which the equipment will be operated. Evaluation of the operator's knowledge thereafter of pertinent information and operating skills is required every 3 years. Additional training is required when an evaluation shows a need, after an accident, or when improper operation is observed. Each operator shall be required to conduct a PIT self-inspection of the equipment prior to placing the equipment into service. The PIT operator is required as part of his certification to be competent and capable of completing PIT inspections as required by company policy and procedures.


The NEII® Field Employee Safety Committee is responsible for maintaining this position paper. This policy shall be in effect for three (3) years from the date of approval by the committee.

Approved: March 15, 2001
Revised: September 17, 2007
Reaffirmed: August 5, 2014


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