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Forklift Operator Training Improves Safety


With roots in the manufacturing and dock building industries dating back to 1963 as Valley Manufacturing, American Muscle Docks & Fabrication LLC. is focused on building stronger, simpler, and more aesthetically pleasing dock systems and dock hardware for commercial and residential applications.  All truss frames, truss hardware, wood dock hardware, pile/pipe holders, jet ski lifts, and specialty fabricated metal parts are manufactured in their 20,000 sq. ft. facility, located in Wellsburg, WV.

The Challenge

American Muscle Docks & Fabrication is a small manufacturer with less than 50 employees. With no full-time safety specialist on staff, they often rely on the offerings of the WVU Industrial Extension, part of the MEP National Network™, for their safety training needs. They sought the assistance of the WVU Industrial Extension to facilitate powered industrial truck training, mainly forklift operator training with classroom and hands-on evaluation components, for their Wellsburg location.

Forklift operators with minimal training were costing numerous work hours every day by not properly maintaining their equipment and not using best practices when operating the equipment. New employees with forklift responsibilities were being trained inconsistently on an "as-needed" basis. This caused erratic work stoppages to provide the minimal amount of training to get the current task completed. This informal training pulled forklift operators and sometimes management away from their assigned tasks, compounding the time lost to the organization.  
Working with the WVU Industrial Extension office saves us a lot of time and effort on administrative needs. More importantly, the quality work and professionalism provided by the WVUIE team helps keep our business competitive and has a noticeable impact on our bottom line.
— Luke Diserio, CEO

MEP's Role

The WVU Industrial Extension evaluated the equipment and processes used by American Muscle Docks to design custom training to meet their needs. As a result, a targeted, instructor-led forklift safety training program was efficiently delivered to 16 workers. The training provided operators with classroom and hands-on forklift operating skills. Each operator's skills were evaluated and workers who successfully completed the training were provided wallet certification cards (3-year expiration).

The WVU Industrial Extension was able to provide the training at a greatly reduced cost compared to other outside resources. For American Muscle Docks, this not only made the training affordable, but it made it possible.
Created January 19, 2022