New guidance for wheeled loading shovels

Chris Tindall
November 8, 2021

Traffic Commissioners have warned operators of wheeled loading shovels to ensure they have read new guidance on the safety of their operation, after nine fatalities in the last four years.

Six of the deaths were within the waste and recycling sector and the health and safety executive (HSE) said poor visibility was a significant problem.

Larger capacity buckets have been fitted to some machines, which the TCs said further reduced forward visibility.

The new safety notice reminds duty holders of the need to fully assess and actively manage the risk of vehicle-pedestrian collisions.

“Traffic commissioners expect operators to ensure that they have regard to guidance and advice issued on the safety of their operation and that risk is properly assessed and measures taken align to the available advice,” they said.

The HSE said the engine at the rear of wheeled loading shovels have also led to visibility problems, with some of the deaths caused by a vehicle reversing.

Tim Small, HSE head of waste and recycling, said: “Poorly planned use of wheeled loading shovels can have fatal consequences.

“This safety notice reminds duty holders who use these machines of the need to fully assess and actively manage the risk of vehicle-pedestrian collisions.

“Currently, the only effective control measure is strict segregation of vehicles and pedestrians.

“If you cannot ensure segregation, you should not use larger capacity buckets or wheeled loaders, but employ alternative work methods such as using different machinery and/or site management arrangements,” he added.

About the Author


Chris Tindall

Chris Tindall started writing for the haulage and logistics industry in 2002 and quickly realised there was enough going on to keep him busy for a very long time. He’s covered a broad range of significant issues, including GPS jamming by criminals, platooning, Brexit and the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, the lack of safe and secure lorry parks and he helped secure the release of a lorry driver in a Polish jail due to misuse of the European Arrest Warrant.

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