A common misconception amongst businesses is that forklift trucks (FLT) crossing public roads do not need to be taxed, registered or insured.
It is true that FLTs which travel less than 1000 yards have special dispensation from compliance with the Construction and Use Regulations but this dispensation does not make FLTs exempt from Road Traffic Legislation.
If the FLT travels less than a 1000 yards, on public roads, between sites or for unloading vehicles outside the workplace, then it can be driven with little modification (lighting, excise duty, number plate etc) however it must be registered and insured and the operator must hold a valid driving licence.
If, on the task to be performed, the FLT travels more than 1000 yards, then it must comply with the Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations which can be very complex and would likely involve major modifications to the vehicle.
Kevin Barrett, Wilby Ltd Risk Management Consultant, comments:- “This is a misconception I’ve seen at many workplaces and I would suggest that each company reviews their use of fork lift trucks to ensure that they comply with the relevant legislation. Incidents involving fork lift trucks are all too common so it’s important you look to reduce the risk of using them wherever possible.”