Tipper Overturn Whilst Unloading
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN
ACCIDENT / INCIDENT DETAILS
The driver arrived on site and signed in at the weighbridge and made his way to the tipping point. After opening the doors and examining the load he was concerned that the load had settled to one side, against the nearside of the trailer. He then began to tip and noticed the trailer beginning to lean. He lowered the trailer body and asked the loading shovel driver to put a small amount of material in to even the load out. The shovel placed approximately 5 ton into the lorry. The driver then began to tip the load. He climbed out of his cab to check to see if the body was going up squarely. The driver noticed that the body was leaning and went back to the tractor unit to disengage the lifting ram but before he could do this the ram bent and the trailer went over. Fortunately the tractor unit was only lifted a short distance. The primary cause appears to be a build up of load over one side of the trailer body between the rear axle of the tractor unit and the first axle of the trailer. The ground was even and flat.
ACCIDENT / INCIDENT IMAGES
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The aftermath of the event
LEARNING POINTS / ACTIONS TAKEN
Recommendations / Conclusions
A number of issues have been highlighted as a result of this incident:
1. Truck drivers should always remain in their cabs, with their seat belt on, when tipping loads.
2. Truck drivers should not attempt to return to their cabs whilst the truck is tipping over! See point 1.
3. Drivers should be aware that in older trailers, placing additional weight in the area between the rear axle of the tractor unit and the first axle of the trailer is likely to cause increased instability, particularly in those trailers with square sides. Further instability is caused if the load has bound together in this area due to being damp or being loaded unevenly allowing for a sudden shift in weight whilst tipping.
4. Loading shovel drivers should avoid placing additional material into trailers in order to ‘even the load’. Should a hazard be identified then better communication between loader driver, weighbridge clerk and site management is paramount. A thorough assessment of risk should have been carried out.
LEARNING POINTS / ACTIONS IMAGES
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