Pallet Truck LOLER Inspections
Book a UK Pallet Truck Inspection
If you're asking the question do pallet trucks come under LOLER, then you've come to the right place. Loler has always been a critical factor in maintaining health and safety within work environments. The regulations have been in place for over two decades and affect a wide range of industries, particularly construction, logistics, agriculture and transport. Recently, the government announced that pallet trucks are to be regulated under LOLER alongside other heavy lifting equipment. We can provide a thorough inspection service throughout the North West. If you would like to book an inspection or have any questions about the regulations, contact us to speak to one of our experts.
We are also experts in providing pallet truck servicing across the United Kingdom. Locations that we can cover include Liverpool, Merseyside, the Wirral, Southport, Warrington, Birkenhead, and Manchester, to name just a few.
The Health & Safety Executive has updated its Approved Code of Practice to clarify that LOLER applies to pallet trucks (manual & powered).
What is My Legal Responsibility?
If you are an employer or self-employed person providing lifting equipment for use at work, or you have control of the use of lifting equipment, then the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations (LOLER) will apply to you. The work should be planned, organised and performed by properly trained people. Pallet Trucks should be subject to ongoing thorough examination by a competent person. Records should be kept.
When Did the HSE Clarify Loler for Pallet Trucks & What Does It Mean?
The Health & Safety Executive amended the Approved Code of Practice and guidance document in June 2018. This document is an essential resource for businesses, employees and representatives as it outlines how to safely and correctly comply with Loler. The document provides reliable and accurate guidance based on official regulations for using lifting equipment in the workplace. The changes made in 2018 solely focus on hand pallet trucks and how they relate to the regulations.
Here is the exact amendment, as specified by the HSE: "28(c) high lift pallet trucks, both manual and powered, that have the ability to raise the forks above 300mm."
The Health and Safety Executive made the change to clarify that high lift pallet trucks should follow LOLER, as long as the machines have the ability to lift higher than 300mm. Until this clarification, there was some confusion about whether pallet trucks require examination under LOLER. The view of the HSE is that certain pallet trucks are used to transport goods, not lift them, and therefore LOLER wouldn't apply. However, for trucks that lift higher than 300mm, this is considered a lifting operation and should follow the regulations. All types of pallet trucks should continue to follow safety guidelines as outlined by PUWER.
Do All Pallet Trucks Require Loler Inspections?
Not every pallet truck requires frequent Loler inspections, especially if the consequence of a load falling off is very low. Pallet trucks generally don't lift loads too high, and their purpose is more to transport loads from place to place, not to lift items. Therefore, not every pallet truck must follow LOLER. If a pallet truck lifts higher than 300m, then it should follow LOLER and therefore be inspected regularly.
Does It Affect Both Electric and Hand Pallet Trucks?
According to the Approved Code of Practice clarification released by the Health & Safety Executive, LOLER should apply to pallet trucks that have the ability to raise the forks above 300mm. Due to this definition, the regulations will normally only apply to high-lift pallet trucks. High-lift trucks can usually lift loads to around 700m. LOLER will apply whether the truck is manually powered by hand or electrically powered, just as long as it can lift over 300mm. Regardless of how the truck is powered or how high it can lift, all pallet trucks are at least subject to PUWER (Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations). Measures should always be taken to reduce the risk of accidents and ensure equipment is in good, safe working condition.
Why Does a Pallet Truck Require Regular Servicing?
As the Health & Safety Executive has clarified that the LOLER regulations should cover pallet/pump trucks, it is now more important than ever that businesses carry out regular servicing. Pallet truck servicing will not only ensure that you continue to comply with LOLER but, more importantly, make sure you are taking steps to safeguard the health and wellbeing of employees. As with any lifting equipment, pump trucks can break down at any time. If faults to equipment occur, then accidents can follow.
Pallet trucks are not as complicated or as dangerous as other types of lifting equipment. They are also designed for frequent use and capable of holding strong weight, making them suitable for long-term use. However, that doesn't guarantee that faults and malfunctions won't happen. It also won't prevent dangerous accidents and serious injuries from being caused. While using a pallet truck can seem harmless, there are still significant risks involved in lifting and transporting heavy goods.
Regular pallet truck servicing is highly recommended to prevent incidents. A thorough service should inspect and test several essential components and functionalities of the pump truck. The purpose of the service is to ensure that the truck is safe to use, works as intended, operates at maximum performance, and meets industry standards. If any issues are identified, then a certified technician can carry out repairs. Ultimately, pallet truck servicing will keep your equipment in top condition and prevent accidents from happening.
What Should a Pallet Truck Inspection Checklist Include?
Due to the various risks of using pallet trucks to lift equipment, they must undergo regular pallet truck servicing and inspections. As well as sticking to a LOLER inspection schedule, a legal requirement for high lift trucks, pallet trucks should receive frequent and thorough maintenance.
As a lifting operator or supervisor, you must be aware that workplace accidents can cause a wide range of consequences. Injuries can cause disruption if the employee requires time off work for a sustained amount of time. More significantly, an injury can lead to life-changing results and hefty punishments such as a fine or imprisonment. While pallet trucks may seem safe and a minor hazard, they can still cause serious accidents from lifting heavy materials. Workplace accidents often happen due to incorrect use of equipment or equipment that malfunctions. Regular pallet truck inspections will identify weaknesses before the equipment is used, allowing you to address areas of concern and mitigate risk to workers.
Here is a brief example of what a typical pallet truck inspection checklist may include:
- Check that there are no splits in the tyres
- Look out for signs of cracks or damage
- Test that the steering works smoothly as intended
- If there is a safety horn, check if it works
- Ensure that handles are secure and no bolts are missing
- Check whether the pallet truck lifts to its maximum height
- Test the brakes to ensure they engage and don't stick when released
- Examine the battery charge and water levels
- Make sure that the emergency stop button works correctly
- Test the pallet truck's ability to drive and lift in all possible directions
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a LOLER thorough examination?
This is a detailed examination of the Pallet Truck components to ensure it is safe for continued use.
Who enforces the regulations?
Health and Safety Inspectors from the HSE (Health & Safety Executive) and local authorities enforce these regulations.
What happens if I don’t carry out LOLER examinations?
You could be subject to enforcement action including being fined in a court of law. It is a legal requirement that you have a current report of thorough examination (STE) for the Pallet Truck
How often does my Pallet Truck need a LOLER?
It is a requirement of legislation that Pallet Trucks are regularly examined at a frequency of no more than six months apart.