Powered Industrial Trucks Quickstart

The MSU Powered Industrial Truck Program applies to employees using powered industrial trucks for materials handling.  The trucks may be powered by an electric motor or internal combustion engine. Powered industrial trucks include, but are not limited to, fork lifts, tow motors, lift rolls, motorized pallet jacks, order pickers, platform rider trucks, high lift straddle trucks and other pedestrian/rider-controlled lifts.

Excluded from these requirements are golf carts, tractors, and equipment that are designed to move earth or drive on public roads.  Other training programs cover this equipment.

PIT operators must be retrained every three years or when operators are observed performing unsafe acts, new equipment is acquired, or working conditions change that could affect the safe operation of the truck.

To comply with the MIOSHA law, Michigan State University employees including student workers, and students engaged in academic related work must:

  • Complete online training,
  • Receive hands on, site-specific training from a departmental employee or EHS Occupational Safety Team member who has a current trainer certification.

Site-specific training must be performed using the same equipment that the employee uses on the job.  The person performing the hands on training must have the knowledge and skills to show proper operation and inspection of the equipment.  The MIOSHA state safety rules for powered industrial trucks and daily operating checklists are available on the EHS website for a review of the material covered in the online training.  When the new employee has had time to become familiar with the operation of the equipment an onsite performance test will be done.  The trainer will fill out the “MSU Performance Test for PIT Operators” while evaluating the employee.  The department, or members of the Occupational Safety Team at EHS may administer the performance test. Once the site-specific training is complete and the trainer has verified that the employee has completed the online portion of the training a permit can be issued, and the record can be entered into Ability. The PIT permit is valid for 3 years. 

As the deadline for permit expiration nears, Ability will remind individuals through email of the retaining requirements.