A licence to perform high risk work is required if workers use or operate high risk work equipment or plant. Licences are valid in every Australian state and territory, enabling workers to operate high risk equipment under consistent standards throughout Australia. On average, there are around 180 injuries and one death involving forklifts each year in New South Wales As a result, forklift safety is a priority area for WorkSafe .

The operator will be trained to plan the work, conduct routine checks on the forklift, shift loads in a safe manner, and shut down and secure the equipment after the completion of operations.

Candidates will be instructed in how to:

  • identify workplace hazards, and implement hazard control measures
  • check the forklift truck for damage, and report defects
  • carry out pre- and post-operational checks
  • move loads, avoiding hazards
  • respond to unplanned and unsafe situations
  • secure the forklift after use.

This unit specifies the skills and knowledge required to operate a forklift truck safely in accordance with all relevant legislative requirements. Competence in this unit, does not in itself result in a HRWL licence to operate this plant.


Forklift truck means a powered industrial truck equipped with lifting media made up of a mast and an elevating load carriage to which is attached a pair of fork arms or other attachments that can be raised 900 mm or more above the ground, but does not include a pedestrian-operated truck or a pallet truck.

A person performing this work is required to hold a forklift truck High Risk Work Licence (HRWL).

This unit requires a person operating a forklift truck to:

  • plan for the work/task
  • prepare for the work/task
  • perform work/task
  • pack up
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