Forklift Training Amends 2017


For the first time since 2000, a new testing standard for forklift training has been created by The Accrediting Bodies Association (ABA) which was implemented on 1st September 2017. If tests are not using the new testing format, then they will be invalid.

The changes came about after The ABA liaised with training organisations, trade associations, insurers and employers so that the test they produced reflected the real working environment, addressing the needs of employers. The ABA Focus Group made the decision to penalise candidates who repeatedly fell short when it came to safety-related behaviour, and if they continued to commit the same fault, they would not pass the practical test element, allowing for further training.


What are the main changes?

There are some key changes when it comes to the new testing standards. When it comes to the Pre-Use Inspection, 13 out of 22 elements are deemed safety critical. This means candidates must carry out a full and correct check of the items, and if they fail to do so they will receive an automatic referral for this element of the test.

As part of the theory test, the bank of multiple choice questions features five mandatory questions. It’s essential that these questions appear in all question papers. For candidates who get any of these questions wrong, the overall result of the association of knowledge examination will be a referral, with the overall score having no impact on this.


If candidates incur more than three 5-point penalties in any one penalty criteria during the practical skills test then they will be disqualified.

Fault Number: 2, Fault Description: Body and limbs outside of truck, Penalty Award: 5

Fault Number: 3, Fault Description: Failing to check all around the truck, Penalty Award: 5

Fault Number: 4, Fault Description: Failing to look in direction being travelled, Penalty

Award: 5

Fault Number: 5, Fault Description: Failing to use an appropriate safety device, Penalty Award: 5

Fault Number: 6, Fault Description: Travelling in the wrong direction unintentionally, Penalty Award: 5

Fault Number: 10, Fault Description: Hydraulic controls being operated when moving, Penalty Award: 5

Fault Number: 14, Fault Description: Failing to handle steering wheel when travelling, Penalty Award: 5

Fault Number: 16, Fault Description: Low forks or load when travelling, Penalty Award: 5

Fault Number: 22, Fault Description: Failing to apply parking brake or engage neutral, Penalty Award: 5

Fault Number: 25, Fault Description: Failing to fully insert fork arms, Penalty Award: 5

Fault Number: 31, Fault Description: Failing to apply park brake and engage neutral, Penalty Award: 5

Fault Number: 36, Fault Description: Load is lowered onto reach legs, Penalty Award: 5

Fault Number: 37, Fault Description: Reach is extended whilst travelling, Penalty Award: 5

As stated above, 14 out of the 37 criteria now have a 5-point penalty, compared to the previous 10 in the original testing criteria.

If a referral is given, this does not mean a candidate has failed the theory or practical elements but shows the need to re-take a specific element of the course.


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