Location: Washington D.C.
Experiance: Almost 20 years with the Propane Education & Research Council and Industrial Truck Association
Modern: This month is the ITA’s biggest outreach event of the year: National Forklift Safety Day. What is it, and why should people attend?
Feehan: The ITA has long been out front promoting the importance of safety with lift trucks in all types of facilities and outdoors. Safety is part of the culture of the organization. And, to be honest, the hard part about promoting safety is to keep it interesting. We have to keep it front and center because it’s so vital to keep everyone safe and to the success of everyone’s operations. National Forklift Safety Day plays an important role in creating awareness around safety.
This is the 10th anniversary of the event, a notable milestone. And while we call it a day, safety is critical 365 days a year. For people attending the event in person, we will start on June 12 with a two-hour educational session on the economy and congressional activity. National Forklift Safety Day presentations will be held on June 13 at the National Press Club in Washington D.C. The educational and informational program is intended to keep safety top of mind and keep its importance elevated. We have a range of speakers who focus on what the industry and Federal government are doing to advance safety every day.
And I have to mention that Chuck Pascarelli has triple duty here as ITA chairman of the board of directors, chairman of ITA’s National Forklift Safety Day Task Force and president, Americas Hyster-Yale Group. He’s put himself right in the middle of all the safety action here.
Modern: Do you have to be a member of ITA to attend?
Feehan: Absolutely not. This is a free event for all. Attendees are our members who manufacture lift trucks, suppliers, dealers and anyone else interested in safety in the industrial workplace. Last year we had nearly 1,000 people, with the majority joining us online. It’s easy to register (National Forklift Safety Day—Industrial Truck Association—Industrial Truck Association (indtrk.org) for the event.
Modern: What are some of the topics that will be covered?
Feehan: Topics range from safety practices and forklift operator training to new technologies from the industry to improve workplace safety.
One of our first speakers will be from OSHA. As you know, lift trucks and warehouse safety are critical to OSHA, so the agency will update us on the latest initiatives there and what people can expect in the year ahead.
It’s also worth noting that ITA successfully petitioned OSHA to amend the powered industrial truck regulation to specify new operator training requirements. And our interest in that and related issues remains a top priority. We continue to work closely with OSHA to update OSHA’s Powered Industrial Truck Regulation to reference the ANSI/ITSDF B56.1 2020 version to advance safety standards for how manufacturers manufacture trucks.
Modern: You also mentioned industry efforts to promote safety are a key focus that day.
Feehan: Yes, this year Hyster-Yale Group will talk about their suite of technologies that protect pedestrians from hazards out on the floor including lift trucks. We’ll get the full story on how that technology was developed and why it’s so important every day.