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Forklift Rental Yard Liability

Author: Jeff Ord,

When renting a forklift to a customer (lessee), the rental yard (lessor) should have the following or similar written statement or agreement from the customer (lessee) with their dated signature of acceptance or decline, prior to renting a forklift to each customer:

__________(lessor) has advised and given customer, __________ (lessee), a copy of OSHA’S new forklift operator training requirement, 29CFR1910.178, Para. (L), Operator Training, Powered Industrial Trucks, dated 12-1-98. Customer (lessee)__________ accepts or __________ declines forklift operator training from __________(lessor).

_________________Signature (lessee)

____________Title ____________Date

All forklift rental yards must be knowledgeable of OSHA’S current training requirements and be able to pass this information on to the customer who, in many cases, may not be aware of OSHA’S specific forklift operator training requirement. Rental yards might find themselves in serious trouble in the event their customer has an accident or receives an OSHA citation as a result of untrained or unauthorized forklift operators driving your forklifts. If a customer (lessee) can prove they had no prior knowledge or information of OSHA’S forklift operator training requirement, the responsibility and liability might be that of the rental yard. We advise that all rental companies seek their own legal counsel for advice and specific agreement verbiage relating to this liability concern.

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