2SLIPS AND FALLSClimbing into and out of van trailers is a normal and routine task for truck drivers. Many kinds of injuries can occur while performing this task.Injuries resulting from slips and falls are common for drivers, but they don’t have to be.You may associate falls with climbing, but a fallDoesn’t always happen while climbing. A fall canoccur while opening a van door. Climbing doesincrease your injury severity risk should you fall,But inadequate footing can also lead to an accident.
3Many drivers believe that falling inside the trailer or slipping at ground level does notwarrant any extra care with his or her movementaround the vehicle.Most believe that for the fall to be significant, one has to be off the ground. However, several thousand people die each year as a result of ground level falls.
4If you do happen to fall, the effect of your injury cannot be pre-determined, so having one minor slipcould be disabling or even fatal if you strike yourhead during the fall.THIS IS NOT SOMETHING TO TAKE LIGHTLY.
5Injuries to shoulders, ankles, knees and hips account for forty-seven percent of ground level falls.Among the more minor injuries resulting from a slip or fall include :SprainsStrainsBruisesLacerations & Contusions
6A driver’s back is the most frequently injured body part that results from a slip or fall.Thirty-seven percent of back injuries arefrom elevated falls.It is approximately three to four feetfrom the trailer floor to the ground.
7ACCIDENTS HAPPEN TO SOMEONE ELSE! We would all like to believe that accidents happento someone else, but the truth is, they really don’t.There is good news though; nearly all injuries causedby slips and falls can be prevented.Utilizing control measures along with applying someSimple knowledge can and will reduce your risk.
8HAZARDS AND PREVENTION Climbing into a trailerThink twice about what you are trying to accomplish and how tosafely perform your duties.Before exiting the cab, make sure that the brake has been set,the truck is turned off, and the ignition keys are in your control.3. Ensure that your vehicle is properly parked (use hazard lamps when applicable) to avoid being struck by other vehicles while you are inside the trailer.
9WHEN ATTEMPTING TO ENTER THE TRAILER If possible, back the truck into a lighted docking area wherethe height of the trailer and the height of the dock are similar.This can reduce the possibility of a fall from an elevation.Avoid using the ICC bumper to climb into the trailer withoutwithout the use of a ramp or a dock
10If there is NOT a dock or ramp available and you MUST use the ICC bumper:1. Ensure that the bumper is clean from obstruction or potential hazard. This includes: gravel, dirt, grease, oil, ice and snow.2. Use grab bars, handrails, and steps if they are available.USE THE THREE POINT CONTACT RULE AT ALL TIMES!Do not climb with objects in your hands. Set them inside the traileruntil you are done climbing.Check the bottoms of your shoes to determine if you stepped inanything slippery. If so, wipe your feet before climbing. If you have shoelaces, make sure that they are tied.
11DO NOT JUMP! THIS IS HOW AN INJURY CAN OCCUR. EXITING THE TRAILERThe best way to exit the trailer is to face the vehicle and back out.This will allow you to maintain a THREE POINT CONTACT.Watch your feet and where you are steppingEnsure that you have proper light when climbing and exiting thetrailer at nightDO NOT JUMP! THIS IS HOW AN INJURY CAN OCCUR.If you can’t safely reach the bumper by stepping backwards, sitdown near the edge of the trailer (feet over the edge) and slide on yourbuttocks so that your feet touch the bumper (while holding grab rail).
12Do not lean/swing over the sides/end of the trailer to view the side of the vehicle. Safely exit the trailer first.Don’t get in a hurry and ignore safe movement. The sacrifice of unsafe movement, for the speed of movement, does not profit anyone if you are injured.If you wear gloves, ensure that they provide adequate gripon handrails.Wear adequate shoes for the job. Rubber soled shoes or boots area must. Good traction between your shoes and any surfaceis essential. Your shoe or boot soles should have ridges or ribsfor better traction. Leather soles should be avoided becausethey provide poor traction when wet.
13OPENING AND CLOSING THE VAN DOORS Use proper technique when opening and closing van doors.Make sure all locking devices have been removed before opening the doors. Replace them once the doors have been closed.Ensure that your feet are placed securely before attempting to open/close the trailer doors. Slips occur quite frequently performing this task. BE CAREFUL!Do not jerk or pull on the doors with sudden movements. Bend at the knees and lift with arms and legs (not your back) when opening latches or roller type doors. With swinging doors, make sure that the path of the door in unobstructed before moving it.On windy days, it may be difficult to open and shut doors. Keep a grip on swinging doors to prevent them from opening or closing abruptly (this is how drivers get struck or their fingers broken). Use the door latches to secure the doors if your truck has been equipped with them.
14ALWAYS KEEP HANDS AND FINGERS CLEAR OF DOORS TO PREVENT CRUSHING OR PINCHING. Ensure that no one has entered your vehicle without you knowing. If the trailer has been left unattended with the lock off, recheck the inside of the trailer before moving it.Report all broken or still hinges to the garage for repair.When parked near moving traffic, remember not to walk out from behind a trailerwithout making sure that your path is safe. This will prevent you from being struckby another vehicle