forklift training free for vetsOur veterans have given a lot of themselves to all of us, Toyota Lift of Minnesota through forklift certification and training is working to give Minnesota veterans a leg up in their civilian life. Did you know that operators of powered industrial trucks must be fully trained and employer certified as required by OSHA federal regulation? As part of the regulation, truck operators are required to complete
formal classroom training, practical hands-on training, and evaluation. We knew we could help with that.

In March of 2011, through the generosity of Toyota Industrial Equipment, who is celebrating more than 50 years in business in North America. TMHU is the supplier of Toyota lift trucks, the number one selling brand since 2002. In addition to the full line of high-quality lift trucks, the company’s extended industrial equipment solutions include Automatic Guided Vehicles and tow tractors. Toyota Lift of Minnesota began testing and certifying veterans in forklift operation. We have since certified several hundred veterans. Our training agenda includes:

  • Introduction To Safe Lift Truck Operation
    (includes the review of Operator, and Pedestrian videos.)
  • Familiarization With The Lift Truck –
    (cost, weight/mass, instruments, and controls)
  • Operator Maintenance Responsibilities (inspections, equipment checks)
  • Starting And Driving Practice
    (practical application of skills in your environment)
  • Material Handling Practice
    (using loads your drivers are familiar with)
  • Review And Test
    (repeat showing of the videos, give furnished quiz orally and written)

Work With Veterans Seen by the Media

quality digest screen shotIn late 2013 Quality Digest covered our training in their daily live manufacturing digest broadcast. You can still see that video through this link. Our forklift training and certification for veterans can be seen at the 3:20 mark in the video. Quality Digest for thirty years has been bringing news and information to quality professionals. With more than 40,000 opted-in subscribers, they are the source for cutting-edge management, tools, and innovation in the field. You can find their website here, and you can also connect to them through Twitter at @QualityDigest and Facebook.

More recently, local channel CCX Media visited Toyota Lift of Minnesota and our forklift trainer Steve Gerlach [also a veteran] during our recent veteran’s class. CCX stands for “Connected Community Experience”. CCX Media is a service of Northwest Community Television which has proudly served Brooklyn Center, Brooklyn Park, Crystal, Golden Valley, for over 30 years. During their visit, they witnessed veterans receiving training in the classroom and in the warehouse. A spokesperson for the company says it was a way TLM could give back to the people who have served. Please watch the video below. says: Looking for a hard-working, motivated, ethical employee? Try hiring a U.S. veteran. Veterans are disciplined team players that can bolster an employer’s business. What’s more, hiring veterans is not only a good idea, it’s good business. More locally, MinnPost succinctly defined the benefits, listing them as:

  • Lower turnover: U.S. Bank has found its retention rate 47 percent lower with veteran employees than with non-veterans.
  • Higher aptitude: Xcel Energy has found 70 percent of vets pass its applicant aptitude tests, compared with 45 percent of non-vets.
  • More reliability: EJ Ajax’s absentee rate is 7 percent lower for veterans than non-veterans, and the average veteran tardy rate is 39 minutes versus 62 minutes.

Do you know a veteran who might be interested in this free service? Have them visit our website and click on our Event Calendar link. Scroll through the months until you find the link to our next class date [not known at the time this article was published]. Or contact us through the form on the right and we will work with you directly.

We look forward to another year of assisting veterans through this process in 2019. Forklift certification is just a small part of all the effort Toyota has done to benefit veterans, more on that in a moment.


We would enjoy hearing from you. Post your ideas or comments below, let’s start a dialog.

For more information, insights or conversations regarding your forklift or material handling needs. You can visit our online contact form, call me at 763-315-9288 or email

We would welcome the opportunity to cover your material handling questions or concerns. Toyota Lift of Minnesota works very hard to be your partner and material handling, consultant. You can also use our contact form seen to the right!

Questions, Needs or A Concern? Contact Me Direct

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