Massachusetts Forklifts laws & safety compliance analysis

Massachusetts Forklifts: What you need to know

Comparison: State vs. Federal

Massachusetts does not have a federally approved occupational safety and health regulatory program for the state; therefore, private sector workplaces must comply with federal occupational safety and health standards. The Massachusetts Department of Labor and Workforce Development/Division of Occupational Safety does not have forklift safety requirements for public sector employers (state or local government operations) in general industry.

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The Massachusetts Department of Public Safety (DPS) has additional licensing requirements for hoisting machinery operators, which includes all forklift operators, in the commonwealth.

The U.S. Department of Labor/Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) administers and enforces federal workplace safety and health requirements in private sector workplaces. The Massachusetts Department of Labor and Workforce Development/Division of Occupational Safety administers workplace safety and health rules in public sector workplaces.

State Requirements
520 Code of Massachusetts Regulations (CMR) 6.00

No person will operate hoisting machinery—as defined in 520 CMR 6.01—unless such person holds a license or temporary permit.

Hoisting machinery includes derricks, cableways, machinery used for discharging cargoes, and temporary elevator cars used on excavation work or used for hoisting building material when the motive power to operate such machinery is mechanical and other than steam, including but not limited to excavators, backhoes, front-end loaders, uniloaders, skid loaders, skid steer loaders, compact loaders or similar devices, lattice cranes, derricks, and cranes with or without wire rope; all forklifts, powered industrial lift trucks, ...

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