CPCS A17E Telescopic Handler (Suspended Loads Only) Course

1. Course Overview

Telescopic handlers incorrectly account for a high proportion of accidents on site. This is largely due to lack of formal training. We provide training for people of all experience levels from novice to experienced operator. This course is designed to give all delegates the fundamental techniques and skills which will enable these accidents to be avoided.

The CPCS A17 Telescopic Handler course provides formal instruction and practical training in operating a telescopic handler weighing 9 tonnes and above. This course is for people with limited or no experience of operating a telescopic handler. It is aimed at inexperienced operators who may require a little longer to train to the required level of operating competence. This course is also suitable for experienced operators who require formal training and wish to obtain a nationally recognized operator qualification.

The CPCS A17E Telescopic Handler (Suspended Loads Only) course is designed to provide novice and intermediate telescopic handler operators with a solid foundation in health and safety law, and to give current operators the ability to obtain a recognized operator qualification. Our telescopic handler training is accredited by the Contractors Plant Hire Association and is based upon the National Occupational Standards developed by the sector skills council for Plant.

1.1. Introduction to the CPCS A17E Telescopic Handler Course

This course is designed for any persons who are required to operate a telescopic handler. The course caters for novices and experienced operators, with the novices program covering the content of the experienced operators in addition to extra training. This extra training is to familiarize the novice with the machine and work safely.

The expected duration of this course is 3-4 days depending upon the experience of the candidates. When the CPCS Telescopic Handler course has been successfully completed, candidates can progress onto a CPCS technical test. This involves a professional discussion with the tester to show that you have the underlying knowledge to operate a telescopic handler safely and efficiently.

The CPCS Telescopic Handler course is designed to provide candidates with a thorough practical and theory training in operating a telescopic handler. On passing the technical tests, a CPCS Red Trained Operator card (on successful completion of the CPCS Telescopic Handler Technical Test) or a CPCS Trained Operator card (on successful completion of the CPCS Telescopic Handler Practical Test) will be issued.

1.2. Importance of Handling Suspended Loads Safely

Handling suspended loads is of vital importance and is particularly hazardous. If the tasks carried out during lifting are identified as high risk under the regulations, then findings from a risk assessment specific to that operation will be required. However, it is recommended that a written risk assessment is conducted for all lifting operations. When managing and planning the lift, the ACoP advises that in many cases, a simple risk assessment involving those carrying out the task will be sufficient. This entails walking through the lift from preparation to setting the load down and considering what can go wrong. This will help in identifying any additional precautions that may be needed. The appointed person should be competent with the type of lifting equipment to be used and able to make informed and rational decisions with regards to the lifting operation. They should have an understanding of the equipment to be used and the load itself to ascertain if they are suitable for the intended operation. For complex or hazardous lifts involving lifting persons or lone workers, an in-depth planning and a method statement is advised.

1.3. Course Objectives and Learning Outcomes

The objectives of the Telescopic Handler (suspended loads) course are to enable the candidate to acquire the theoretical and practical knowledge and skills in telescopic handler operations. At the end of this course, the candidate will have an understanding of the underpinning knowledge and its practical application. He will have a thorough understanding of all safety precautions during the use of the machine and be able to locate and identify the major structural components and explain their functions. He will be able to comply with manufacturers’ requirements in accordance with the operator’s handbook, other types of information sources, and applicable regulations. For the purposes of this module, the candidate will be operating the machine on a suspending loads course. He will be able to locate and identify the major components of the machine and explain their functions during suspending loads. He will be able to comply with the operator’s manual and other information sources in respect to lifting equipment and lifting accessories including safe working loads. He will be able to carry out all pre-use and running checks, configure the machine for travel, and the correct travel procedures. He should be able to load, store, and unload varying materials from differing locations and finally carry out all shutdown and securing procedures. Step by step guide: 1. Take theoretical element test (To be done at the beginning of the course to assess basic knowledge) 2. Undertake a theory lesson and practical demonstration on the machine’s controls and instruments 3. Locate and identify the major structural components and explain their functions. 4. Comply with manufacturers’ requirements in accordance with the operator’s handbook, other types of information sources, and applicable regulations. Step by step guide: 5. Locate and identify the major components of the machine and explain their functions during suspending loads 6. Comply with the operator’s manual and other information sources in respect to lifting equipment and lifting accessories including safe working loads. 7. Carry out all pre-use and running checks, configure the machine for travel, and the correct travel procedures. 8. Load, store, and unload varying materials from differing locations. 9. Carry out all shutdown and securing procedures.

2. Safety Procedures

Moving on to pre-operational checks. This is probably the most familiar task that any plant operator will be used to, and one that should be a habit for any plant operator when operating his machine. A PowerPoint presentation explaining the various checks that need to be done before the machine is operated. This presentation will break down the task step by step. This subject will also prepare the students for the questioning part of the CPCS theory. This will break down the task step by step and the information will be given supported by a worded task and also a visual task using multimedia. Providing a task for the students to answer, the instructor will be able to assess their understanding as there is a worksheet that is to be given out and also give feedback when doing the task. A good technique here will be to get a group of students to demonstrate this. These can be a mixed ability group and all will be able to take something from this as it will be a practical explanation of what needs to be done in any specific task. A good plan here is to prepare a level 1 student and take an A-level group to watch this. The A-level group will be able to take a lot from this by questioning the explanation of the level 1 student and relating to the work that they do or will be doing on a construction site. Check up on the level 1 student should be made at a later date.

Preparing the telescopic handler for safe operation is next in line and also involves a PowerPoint presentation. The information given is short and precise and every point has a purpose. As well as explaining the theory and reasons behind the measures that need to be taken, the demonstration has been carefully thought out and is an essential part relevant to the task it is to be shown. Demonstrating and directing the operator to carry out the various tasks when preparing the machine, using the information from the PowerPoint slides. This involves a lot of input from the students, questioning and answering, and is a good way of checking student knowledge and understanding of the subject when it actually comes to be assessed in the real world. This is what happens when planning and preparation tasks are being carried out by the handler on a construction site, for example, and the machine is driven by another operator. This subject will also prepare the students for the questioning part of the CPCS theory test for telescopic handlers.

Procedures are the next subject that students are introduced to; being a key element in their training, considerable time is spent on this area. Safety is an important factor when operating all plant; it is particularly essential when the plant is to be directed to lift suspended loads. The subject is divided into four categories starting with understanding safety regulations and legislation. This is presented with the use of a PowerPoint presentation and a handout. All relevant legislation is carefully explained and easy to understand; students are tested throughout with a mime task which highlights some of the key directives.

2.1. Understanding Safety Regulations and Legislation

The requirement for thorough examination will mean that the lifting attachments for telehandlers will have to meet stringent safety requirements to be legally compliant. This improved safety standard may mean that some lifting attachments currently in use may become obsolete.

LOLER requires that all lifting operations involving lifting equipment must be properly planned by a competent person, appropriately supervised and carried out in a safe manner. An important aspect of LOLER is the requirement for all equipment used for lifting to be subject to thorough examination and if the equipment is for lifting people, it must be examined every 6 months. A ‘lifting operation’ is the movement of the load whether or not any lifting equipment is involved in the actual moving. A load is any item or load including a person that is to be moved. This means that the movement of a bucket on a front end loader, or a bale with a spike on a telescopic handler is a lifting operation.

Telescopic handlers, being mobile pieces of equipment, come under the legislation of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. This legislation requires all employers to ensure the health, safety and welfare at work of all their employees so far as is reasonably practicable. Specific to the use of lifting equipment, the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 (LOLER) will apply. LOLER puts in place a much higher standard of safety for lifting equipment. The definition of lifting equipment is very broad and can include anything from a fork lift truck to a crane.

The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 (PUWER) requires that equipment provided for use at work is: • Suitable for the intended use • Safe • Maintained in a safe condition • Inspected to ensure it remains safe • Used only by people who have received adequate information, instruction and training

This section of the course aims to make you aware of safety regulations. Legislation and your responsibilities in relation to safety when operating a telescopic handler.

2.2. Preparing the Telescopic Handler for Safe Operation

If the telescopic handler is not prepared for operation, there is a potential risk of injury or damage to the handler itself. To avoid this, the handler must be prepared in a safe and systematic way. An effective way of preparing the handler for operation is the use of a checklist. A sample checklist is included at the end of this unit. The checklist should be developed to suit the type of handler and the working conditions. Some basic steps in preparing the handler would be: removing any attachments, cleaning the handler to identify any damage, parking on a level ground, applying the parking brake, fitting stabilisers correctly if the handler is so equipped, and importantly checking the handler specification and confirm with load chart that the handler can lift and travel with the load. The ground conditions should also be considered as a risk assessment may need to be carried out. Step one of the checklist would be ensuring that all safety and warning decals are in place and are legible. Any damaged or missing decals should be replaced. This is important to ensure that the handler specifications and operating procedures are known and adhere to. Decals should be obtained from the handler manufacturer, or authorised distributor.

2.3. Conducting Pre-Operational Checks

– Inspect the tires for any cuts or excessive wear. Ensure they are correctly inflated. Always lower the pressure in the tires if the machine is to be left standing for a long period of time. This will prevent the tires from becoming flat spotted.

– Visually inspect the machine looking for broken, damaged, or missing parts. Check for leaks around hydraulic rams and around the engine. If a part appears broken, then it should be assumed it is broken until evidence proves otherwise. This is the safest way for an operator, and defects can be reported and seen to as necessary.

– Park the machine in a safe and level area. Lower all equipment to the ground and apply the parking brake. Turn off the engine and remove the key. Place the key in your pocket to prevent someone else from starting the machine while you are carrying out your checks.

Carrying out pre-operational checks is an important factor in maintaining safety in any environment. By conducting proper checks, you may be able to detect faults that could cause an accident. If defects are found, they should be reported and action taken to ensure the plant is safe to use. Manufacturer’s manuals are the best guide to what checks need to be carried out. Below is a list of checks the operator should consider, but it is not exhaustive:

2.4. Identifying and Managing Hazards

Hazards – anything assessed as having the potential to cause bodily harm, an accident, damage to property and environment. As an operator (driver) of a telescopic handler, it is important to be aware of the hazards that may be faced when using the machine and must put measures in place to ensure the risks are minimized. The main types of hazards that may be faced are as follows: Mechanical – where the moving parts of the machine can cause harm i.e. gears, drive chains, sprockets etc. This could occur through entanglement with the parts mentioned or being struck by moving or flying objects. Electrical – this hazard poses a risk from electric shock which can be received from overhead power lines, lightning conductors, the inside of buildings etc. Manual handling – This hazard can be found where the operator may be involved in lifting and lowering, pushing and carrying, moving and holding of an item which could cause muscle strains/sprains. Falling from height – due to the nature of the machine involved with lifting personnel and/or materials to work at height, there can be a risk of falling from the machine or from the item being carried. This is the most common cause of fatal injury in the workplace and the greatest number of major injuries. (fall at work statistics)

3. Operating Techniques

It may be the case that the trainer uses different attachments and or bring in a second telehandler to ensure that the operators get a broader understanding of the machine’s ability to do different tasks. For example, an operator who typically uses a forklift attachment to move palletized loads may benefit from training on a palletless system, so the trainer might consider using some large bags of aggregate as a substitute and discuss the stability of stowing these in different configurations.

Therefore, to put the training in context to these different groups of operators, the trainer may have to research the typical working environment of these groups and liaise with the employers to deliver the training on their premises. It is crucial when doing this to ensure that the training environment is safe and that the trainer has an adequate knowledge of telehandler operations in different environments. For example, delivering training in a forest where the telehandler may be used for loading timber would not be appropriate if the trainer did not have a sufficient understanding of the hazards and safe working practices for this particular operation.

In training terms, this means delivering the relevant information in different training conditions. It is important to vary the conditions when delivering this training, particularly for experienced operators. The telehandler is used in a variety of industries and some specialist operators may only ever operate the machine in one environment, for example a farmer only using the machine in an agricultural environment.

Operating the telescopic handler in different environments

3.1. Operating the Telescopic Handler in Different Environments

Straight mast machines (classic or rigid chassis): Traditionally used in agricultural work, but with the development of rough terrain models they are much more common on construction sites. Typical work includes: load and stacking bales, using a fork attachment to handle pallets of feed, loading grain into hopper or elevators, digging with a bucket, loading trailers or trailers and general materials handling task. The poor rearward visibility from the operator’s position can make these machines difficult to use when loading and there is an increased risk of tipping over backwards. Fitting reversing sirens, a flashing beacon, additional mirrors and/or a rear view camera can all be useful to alert people when the machine is reversing.

What different types of telescopic handlers are there? For each one provide description & typical uses.

Task: – Identify different types of telescopic handler – Identify their typical work environment – Consider constraints that the environment can have on the operation of the machine

Different types of telescopic handlers are designed to operate in various different environments such as implemented in industrial loop, warehouses, agricultural land, construction sites and many more. It is important to know that terrain and environmental conditions can affect stability of the machine, the visibility from the operator’s position and therefore safety of personnel around and below the machine.

3.2. Maneuvering and Positioning the Telescopic Handler Safely

When the handler is travelling with a load or without, the boom should be carried no less than 18′ (5.5m) above the ground and should be retracted fully, except when load conditions require a specific boom extension. This will create a ‘centre of gravity’ within the chassis and ensure machine stability when travelling. When the machine is moving with the boom and load trailing, the speed should be reduced and the handler should be driven up the slope to create an even surface. When the machine has reached a level position, the telescopic boom should be raised. This will enable the handler to turn the chassis and reposition for downhill travel. In some instances, it is not possible or safe to maneuver the handler with a load up a slope (e.g. the slope is too steep, the ground conditions are poor, or there are obstacles present). Under these conditions, the load should be raised to a safe travel height and carried to a suitable location. When working on rough terrain, the handler should avoid high-speed travel with a load and should keep the boom raised and retracted. If the load is light or to aid visual awareness, it may be necessary to use a telehandler with outrigger stabilizers and frame to ensure maximum machine stability when positioning a load. When positioning or repositioning a load at height, the handler must be driven to a safe working position. If possible, the machine should be driven parallel to the load to avoid frequent boom and chassis realignment. A safe working position will ensure maximum machine stability and minimize the risk of overloading one set of the chassis tires. The handler must not drive over or sit on the pile of material being worked.

3.3. Lifting and Lowering Suspended Loads

The load should always be lowered with extreme caution, as this is when most load-related incidents occur. Never lower the load quickly or by allowing it to freefall, as this can be extremely dangerous and a loss of control will cause the load to swing. Always ensure that persons are clear from the drop zone and pay close attention to the landing of the load. If the load is not being placed onto the ground, use a lifting plan to indicate the area that the load is to be placed and use the aid of a banksman to ensure accurate placement.

When lifting and lowering suspended loads, always ensure that the load is safe to lift. This can be done by using a competent banksman or by ensuring that the load is within your load chart and that it is within the capacity of your machine. When lifting the load, ensure that the bucket/forks are firmly placed into the load. This will prevent the load from falling out when being lifted, resulting in preventing any injury to persons working below. When the load has been lifted and is in the air, ensure that the load is not being swung violently. This will create a pendulum effect and can cause the load to swing out of control, hitting other structures or persons close by.

3.4. Handling Loads on Slopes or Uneven Surfaces

The handler is designed to be able to lift, lower and retract the boom whilst positioned on slopes up to a gradient of 10 degrees. When traveling with a suspended load, whether up or down a slope, the load should be raised to a safe height to maintain load control and stability throughout the ascent or descent. However, be aware of site overhead restrictions. A 10% reduced load capacity must be observed when operating the machine and carrying out lifting functions on slopes between 10 and 14 degrees. It is strongly recommended that personnel hold an additional telehandler operator qualification with logged operating experience on similar tasks, and a competent person who has an understanding of telehandler lift and stability characteristics be onsite to make a safe system of work and risk assessment plan. Operation of the machine or lifting functions on slopes greater than 14 degrees must be avoided at all costs. An operator who does not hold logged operating experience and a competent person carrying out similar tasks in the above recommendations must consult the handler manufacturer or CPCS for additional advice and/or seek further training.

A slope, whether it is camber, downhill or uphill, will affect the stability and safe operation of the machine whilst carrying out lifting and travel functions. Stability in both these functions must be maintained to ensure the safety of personnel and loads. The machine must be traveling on a flat surface before commencing work on the slope or have the load raised slightly to maintain forward or reverse stability when traveling onto the slope. Before traveling the handler up or down a slope, the gradient must be assessed to determine whether the machine is suitable for the task.

3.5. Using Attachments and Accessories

Lifting. This is the most simple and core telehandler function, and covers the use of pallet forks or loop/chain straps to lift and carry an item. Pallet forks are a common telehandler attachment, used in a variety of industries. They are generally the preferred and most stable way of carrying heavy small to medium sized items, and allow the operator to achieve precise carriage height and load placement. Overload of the forks should be avoided, and the load should be evenly spaced across the fork blades. Loop/chain straps provide a flexible, yet less stable alternative for carrying items which have no lifting points, or where an under-slung load is required. When using loop/chain straps, the telehandler should be equipped with a carriage-mounted lifting boom, and the strap length should be adjusted to give the desired load height. Always ensure fork or strap compatibility with the load, and that the load does not exceed the machine’s rated lift capacity. This also applies to all other lifting operations in this section.

Digging. There is something important hidden beneath the ground: precious metal, valuable objects, or a water feature. Telehandlers can be fitted with a variety of digging attachments, to suit various purposes. Tractor-mounted hydraulic digging arms are the most common and ubiquitous of all telehandler attachments. Other designs exist, such as a chain trencher, but these often require a specially modified vehicle due to depth and space restrictions. Consider the size of the digging job and the specific ground conditions (hardness of compacted soil, presence of large rocks, etc.) when choosing a digging attachment, as this will affect the required machine power and the type of digging implement required. Never exceed the machine’s rated digging depth or digging force. If in doubt about the suitability of an attachment and its effect on machine stability, the telehandler manufacturer and/or the attachment supplier should be able to provide clear and helpful advice.

4. Maintenance and Inspection

d) Training of the people who will do maintenance and inspection. Steps a, b, and c will have little significance if those who are required to maintain the machine do not have the know-how to make sound maintenance judgments and to carry out effective maintenance tasks.

c) Have the right materials and facilities for proper maintenance. This may at times be quite simple, such as jack stands and service repair manual, or it may mean access to more complex equipment and aid from other sources.

b) Establish a regular routine inspection and maintenance schedule. This will ensure that regular maintenance tasks are not overlooked and that maintenance time can be planned during times when the machine is not needed and can be spared.

a) Keep documentation of regular maintenance, inspection, testing, and when parts are replaced. This will be essential to determine how often each type of maintenance procedure should be done and is also necessary if a company is to develop a quality maintenance system.

With the emphasis on safety, comes the prevention of accidents. Correct maintenance of the machine can prevent people from being hurt. It is the high preventative costs to accidents and injuries that are a primary force behind today’s maintenance in an effort to try and avoid accident and damage-related costs. Hence, maintenance has become a higher priority and wider concern in recent years and with good reason. By today’s standards, a well-maintained machine is one that is serviced regularly, is reliable in operation, meets the safety needs of its operators, and is not excessively costly to operate. Regular maintenance will also result in an increased machine life, with a well-maintained machine being able to last for 15 years or more. As a guide to effective maintenance, the following points should be adopted for routine maintenance of the telescopic handler:

4.1. Routine maintenance procedures for the telescopic handler The uses and purposes for the telescopic handler vary from industry to industry, with it continually being adapted to fulfill the needs of its users. The nature of its function usually means that it is used in an outdoor environment where it is subjected to adverse weather conditions, which can lead to rusting and increased wear and tear.

4.1. Routine Maintenance Procedures for the Telescopic Handler

This is important in ensuring the long life and efficiency of the telehandler. For example, fuel which is left in the fuel tank for long periods of time can attract water from condensation. Fuel becomes stale and can block the fuel filter. Batteries need regular attention. The effects of spilt acid, constant vibrations, and heavy loads can soon take its toll on the battery. Check the acid level and make sure the breather is clear. If necessary, clean around the battery before removing the filler caps. Wheel nuts and bolts should be kept tight. Check the torque tightness at regular intervals. This is particularly important with telehandlers as the constant extension and retraction of the boom can apply excess forces on the machine. Keep a stock of service items such as filters and fluids. It is important to use the correct manufacturers recommended service items to prevent damage to components. Inspect where possible exposed hydraulic rams and check for any leaks of hydraulic fluid. Rams can be protected using the correct lubricant. Scheduled maintenance contracts with dealers or manufacturers can be an efficient way to keep on top of routine maintenance.

4.2. Inspecting and Identifying Defects and Faults

Look underneath the machine for evidence of hydraulic leaks. Inspect all hoses and fittings for damage or oil leaks. Inspect all the tires for excessive wear and damage. Check the boom and stabilizers for any structural damage. If any defects or faults are found during the inspection, tag the defective part, obtain DO NOT USE the machine in this condition. Any defective part should be repaired or replaced by a competent person, and the maintenance inspection and tag removed before further use of the machine. All the inspection checks should be recorded on the service maintenance schedule to confirm the machine is safe to use.

A visual inspection of the machine should be carried out regularly. The service maintenance schedule can be used as a guide. Any defects or faults should be reported, and the defective part repaired or replaced before further use of the machine. Start the inspection at ground level and check the work area around the machine for any hazards. Ensure the parking brake is applied and the wheels are chocked before inspection.

4.3. Reporting and Documenting Maintenance Issues

When a defect or fault is identified when carrying out routine maintenance or inspections, the following procedure should be adopted: a. The extent of the problem should be assessed. If it affects the safe operation of the machine, then it should not be used until the problem has been rectified. Where this is the case, the machine should be immobilized and labeled as “out of service” to prevent any unauthorized use. b. If the defect is a warranty issue or can only be rectified by the dealer or manufacturer, the plant owner should contact the supplier and arrange for an engineer to carry out the necessary repairs. c. When the fault is the result of damage and can be repaired by the plant owner, it should be assessed whether use of the machine exacerbates the degree of damage and results in further problems. If this can be avoided and the machine is still safe to use, it may be decided to delay repair until a more convenient time. If the damage is already done and use of the machine would not cause further problems, the part should be repaired or replaced as soon as possible. d. If the repair can be carried out within a reasonable time frame, it should be scheduled and upon completion, the effectiveness of the repair should be evaluated during the next routine inspection. e. If the repair has prevented further problems, it should be documented as a maintenance issue and the date should be recorded. If the repair did not completely rectify the problem, the fault should be considered an inspection failure and the process repeated. f. If the fault was identified during an inspection and can clearly be distinguished from previous maintenance issues, it should be categorized and an inspection report should be completed. This will provide a useful record to indicate any patterns in the reliability of the machine or whether particular areas are prone to damage. Completed inspection reports and maintenance issues should be kept on file until the problem can be reviewed and an assessment can be made as to how similar issues can be prevented in the future.

4.4. Proper Storage and Security Measures for the Telescopic Handler

It is important to consider where a machine is stored, especially when you are considering how best to protect it from damage and theft. If you have to store the machine outside, it is best to park it under a roof or some other form of cover. If this is not possible, then the machine should be protected with a cover. You will also need to protect the machine against theft. The best way to do this is to remove a component vital to the operation of the machine. This will prevent the machine from being stolen and used or sold on. If this is not possible, then the machine will have to be immobilized. This will still provide some security. Finally, the owner should consider the option of an insurance policy against theft or damage. This will provide financial coverage to repair or replace the machine in the event of damage or theft. Always make a visual inspection of the area where the machine is to be stored to ensure that the security considerations are adequate. An example of cost-effective security for small plant, vehicles, and other high-value smaller equipment is to fix strong points to the floor, a wall, or a vehicle to secure their safe with a security cord or chain used in conjunction with a suitable padlock.