The Fork Lift Truck Association (FLTA), the British Industrial Truck Association (BITA) and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) have confirmed that forklifts and other materials handling & plant equipment MUST continue to undergo scheduled maintenance, repair and statutory inspection during the current pandemic.
Whilst cars and other motor vehicles may be exempt from undergoing MOTs during the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic, owners and operators of materials handling and plant equipment such as forklifts should not follow the same precedent with their own necessary inspections and repairs.
The FLTA released a joint statement with the BITA and the HSE on their website, praising those companies who use materials handling and plant equipment for taking “robust and dynamic action” to help prevent the spread of Covid-19 and keeping their staff and employees safe. However, it went on to caution against completely banning external parties from site, as this could lead to certain considerations – including equipment maintenance and inspection – being overlooked.
Therefore, the FLTA has issued an industry-wide call to action, aimed to ensure:
- “We do all we can to protect staff and prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus; and
- We keep our customers’ businesses operational and in particular, those playing vital roles in maintaining the supply chains that support our communities and our health services.”
The call to action involves continuing to give “due consideration to the need to maintain essential services” whilst diverting or halting all “non-essential activity” until the crisis is over.
Due to the importance of materials handling and plant equipment being safe to use, and confirmed so in the proper manner, the FLTA, along with the BITA and HSE, recommend that “scheduled maintenance, repairs and statutory inspections must be considered essential ongoing activities for any users of such equipment.”
That means you must continue to carry out any scheduled or necessary maintenance, inspections or repairs of your materials handling and plant equipment.
So, please continue to avoid unnecessary accidents or long-lasting damage to your equipment by complying with the FLTA’s recommendations. Our engineers are still on-hand to carry out essential maintenance and repairs at a safe distance and according to Government guidelines. Please do not hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions.