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New fact sheet: Prevent skid steer loader injuries


Photo: photovs/iStockphoto

East Lansing, MI — Employers who have skid steer loaders should develop, implement and enforce a comprehensive injury prevention program that includes training workers on hazard recognition and avoidance.

That’s among a list of recommendations in a recently published fact sheet from Michigan State University on preventing work-related deaths and injuries from skid steer loaders. The document also lists examples of worker deaths involving the equipment.

Also known as compact track loaders or tracked skid steers, skid steer loaders are “small, rigid-framed machines” with lift arms that can accept a wide variety of attachments (buckets, forks, augers, snowblowers and blades, stump grinders, and dumping hoppers). The loaders – which can be equipped with wheels or tracks – are used in construction, demolition, agriculture, landscaping and other industries.

In Michigan, 32 workers died from skid steer loader-related injuries between 2001 and 2021, and 99 were injured from 2015 to 2021, according to MSU.

“People have been crushed between the protective cage and an attachment; injured while driving or being struck by a skid steer loader; struck or crushed by an attachment or item being moved, lifted, or transported by the skid steer loader; caught or crushed by the skid steer loader while performing maintenance tasks; or injured falling off while operating the skid steer loader,” the fact sheet states.

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