The RTITB Operator of the Year Competition Scottish National Final took place last week on Wednesday 4th May; the event was hosted by GTG Training Ltd, Glasgow.

The competitors took part in two practical tests (The BBC and The Platinum Ring), a pre use check and a theory test, and they were marked on a “penalties” basis, the competitor with the lowest number of penalties after all finalists had completed the tests was crowned Scottish National Champion.

The event was attended by employers, accredited organisations, instructors and the general public all of whom expressed that they had thoroughly enjoyed the day. Entertainment was provided alongside the testing for all attendees. There was a caricature artist there for all visitors to take away a special memento of the day, and a Nintendo Wii competition to which a prize was presented for the fastest lap.

The day concluded with the announcement of the Scottish National Champion by Paul Stollard, HSE’s Director in Scotland, who gave a very informative speech about Health and Safety in the workplace before congratulating all of the competitors, employers and training organisations that were present on the day and represented the industry so well.

Robert Watson from Ayrshire, was crowned as the Scottish National Champion. Robert is employed by bpi.visqueen a division of British Polythene Industries and was trained by John McWhinnie Forklift Training. The champion received a red Buyagift voucher and a trophy sponsored by Toyota Material Handling UK, he will also go forward to the Grand Final on Friday 16th September where he will compete for the chance to be RTITB Operator of the Year 2011. Robert highlighted how much he had enjoyed the day “It was fantastic, I really enjoyed meeting all of the other competitors, the competition was different to anything I’ve ever done. Although the tests were challenging they were also fun.” He also said “I am glad to have got through to the Grand Final, and I would like be crowned champion – I had never won anything before today and a brand new car (first prize at the grand final) would be a good start”

The 1st runner up on the day was announced as Simon Bottomley, from Ramsey in the Isle of Man who is employed by Nazaleze Ltd, and was trained by Manx Industrial Training Services he received an orange Buyagift voucher and will also go through to the grand final.

The 2nd runner up was Ian Robertson who is trained and employed by TNT Express Services UK & Ireland, he received a jade Buyagift voucher. All competitors were given certificates on the day to highlight there achievement of getting through to the National Final stage.

The RTITB Operator of the Year 2011 is sponsored by Toyota Material Handling UK and TNT Express Services UK and Ireland.

The trucks that were used in the finalist testing were supplied by Toyota Material Handling UK and were Toyota 7FBMF electric powered counterbalance trucks, with a 3 ton lift capacity and a 4.3m FSV mast. The logistics for the event were supplied by TNT Express Services UK & Ireland and was driven by their Fleet Driver of the Year.

The 3 other National Finals take place as follows;

  • 18th May 2011 – Irish National Final
  • 1st June 2011 – Welsh National Final
  • 15th June 2011 – Midlands & Southern England National Final

The National Finals are open to the public; however attendance (via should be registered in advance as places are limited.

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