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Forklift How-To Articles & Guides | Canada

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Forklift Manufacturers in Canada

There aren’t many forklift manufacturers that produce every type of forklift model available in the market. If you’re interested in purchasing a forklift, you should conduct the proper research and ensure that your manufacturer of choice carries the model that you are seeking. You should also ensure that your manufacturer has adequate dealer representation in your area. Choosing the right type of forklift is never easy. There are many forklift types, and each excels in specific applications. To help you, we’ve compiled a list of forklift manufacturers and dealers based in Canada.

  • Liftking Manufacturing
    • Location: Woodbridge, ON
    • Phone Number: +1 905-851-3988
  • Starke Material Handling
    • Location: Thorold, ON
    • Phone Number: +1 905-227-7554
  • Magnum Lift Trucks
    • Location: Concord, ON
    • Phone Number: +1 905-790-6241
  • Load Lifter
    • Location: Whitchurch-Stouffville, ON
    • Phone Number: +1 905-642-9756
  • Hydraux Manufacturing Corp
    • Location: Orangeville, ON
    • Phone Number: +1 519-942-9190
  • All-Lift Ltd
    • Location: Brampton, ON
    • Phone Number: +1 905-459-5348

Canada Forklift License

In today’s modern world, it’s easier than ever to receive a forklift license. There is a medley of online courses available to anyone looking to obtain a license as a forklift operator. These courses make drivers aware of the legality behind operating a forklift. These sites also provide the theory needed to become a competent operator. After training has been completed, the operator will receive a certification that must be signed by the appropriate parties that can verify that the operator in question has also completed a hands on practical evaluation at their facility. Typically, you’ll see courses that range from hazard identification to fuel sources. Be mindful that regulations revolving around forklift licensing can vary province to province.

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Canada Forklift Jobs

Despite the uncertainty in the current job market, forklift operators remain in high demand. This is proven by the various job boards that are nearly filled to the brim with forklift operator jobs that span throughout various industries.

Typical Job Responsibilities

Typically, as a forklift operator in Canada, you will be responsible for moving materials that are designated for storage areas. There are a wide number of work environments and positions available. Thus you’re given a chance to “cherry pick” the job that best suits you. Some industries, such as warehouses, airports, and construction sites, require around the clock drivers and are always looking for new operators to keep business flowing.

Here is a list of tasks and responsibilities that the typical forklift operator is required to perform:

  • Remain as safe as possible and maintain order in the work environment
  • Load and unload material from vehicles and aircraft
  • Check outbound cargos and delivery receipts
  • Move crates and pallets within storage facilities
  • Wrap materials to prepare them for shipment
  • Move and stack materials or goods in the appropriate bays
  • Take stock of supplies and report any discrepancies
  • Observe stock rotation directions
  • Make sure that loads are secure

Canada Forklift Regulations

There are many laws and regulations in place to ensure that forklift operation is as safe as possible. The Ministry of Labor has set up inspectionsto identify sector-specific hazards. These inspections are conduced to increase compliance and raise awareness with the health and safety legislation and to reduce injuries in the workplace.

  • Lifting device inspection and maintenance
    • An examination of the forklift to determine load capacity
    • Maintaining a forklift and keeping it in good condition to prevent operational or mechanical failures
    • Inspecting a forklift to ensure that it’s properly equipped with the appropriate slings, chains, ropes, and other fittings required for the safe operation of the vehicle.
  • Operation of forklifts is only done by a competent person
    • Operators must observe operating procedures
    • Operators must be able to identify hazards
    • Operators must be able to operate without supervision
    • Operators must be aware of facility designs
    • Operators must be aware of maintenance and repair procedures
    • Operators must be properly trained
  • The work environment must be safe
    • Pedestrian traffic policies and programs must be established
    • Offsite working environments must be accessed for risks such as work surfaces and contacting power lines.

Here is an overview of forklift regulations:

  • Each province takes responsibility for its own health and safety legislation
  • Forklift operators must be taught by a qualified individual
  • The theme that is common throughout the legislation in the forklift industry states that only qualified individuals are allowed to operate mobile equipment.
  • All operators must be assessed on their operating abilities
  • All operators must receive both practical and classroom training

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Canada forklift seatbelt requirements

When we typically think of seatbelts, we tend to think of protection against high-speed collisions. This, however, only applies to automobiles. When it comes to forklifts, seat belts are meant to protect the operator from being “mousetrapped” or crushed if the forklift tips over. In most cases when a forklift begins to tip, the natural instinct of the operator is to jump from the vehicle which exponentially increases their chances of being crushed. Seat belts prevent operators from jumping, subsequently saving their life in the process.


According to OSHA standards, all forklifts that have been manufactured after 1992 are required to have seatbelts. These standards state that employers are required to protect their employees from “serious and recognized hazards”. Mousetrapping is considered one of these hazards. Forklifts that were manufactured before 1992 must be retrofitted with seat belts (or another type of restraining device). Otherwise, the employer can be cited by OSHA for negligence.

Forklift Operator Salary Canada

On average, forklift drivers in Canada can be expected to make between C$13.56 – C$23.09 per hour. As you might have guessed, those who make earnings on the lower end of the spectrum tend to have far less experience than the ones on the higher end. In many cases, individuals move on to other types of jobs if they have more than 20 years’ worth of experience in this field. The skill sets that tend to see the most money are forklift and safety compliance.

On average, forklift drivers can expect to make C$0.43 in hourly tips. Overtime typically runs around C$19.45 – C$34.71. Depending on the company, bonuses can be as low as C$275 to as much as C$3,800. Ultimately, you can expect to make around C$28,269 – C$51,118 a year.

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Forklift Training in Canada

In most instances, many of the employee injuries and property damage that occurs in the work place can be blamed on the lack of adequate employee training. As a result, there are explicit rules set by The Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) and Canadian Standards Association (CSA) concerning both licensing and forklift training.

OSHA 29 CFR 1910.178(I) states that employers must offer forklift operators the proper training for vehicle maintenance and inspection. Forklift operators must be at least 18 years old and must be recertified once every three years. The CSA equivalent is B335-04 (R2012). There are legal requirements for every forklift driver that belongs to any type of organization.

OSHA requires that forklift operators receive:

  • Formal instruction (discussions, lectures, written material, etc.)
  • Demonstrations (performed by a certified trainer)
  • An Evaluation (of the operator while on the job)

Fuel Cell Forklifts Canada

Fuel Cell Forklifts are beginning to gain more traction in the forklift industry. More and more companies are beginning to favor fuel cell forklifts. This is likely because fuel cell forklifts don’t produce local emissions, as opposed to petroleum powered forklifts. Propane forklifts are far more popular, especially when it comes to indoor use, but they’re unable to handle certain food industry related items. In most cases, fuel-cell forklifts are used in warehouses that are refrigerated because temperature does not hinder their performance.

The most recent example of fuel cell forklifts gaining popularity in Canada is Canadian Tire Corporation’s move to replace lead acid battery powered forklifts in favor of fuel cell forklifts to “increase productivity and operational efficiency through clean, non-combustive, non-emissive and sustainable technology”.

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