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FACEValue: Cement truck driver backed over by loader

NIOSH’s Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation Reports
Date of incident: March 29, 2008

A 45-year-old employee of a ready-mixed cement company was fatally injured when he was backed over by a skid-steer loader. The company dispatcher was operating the skid-steer loader, cleaning a gravel pathway used to test concrete patches. The victim stepped out of a worksite trailer onto the gravel path to greet a contract worker. The contract worker saw the victim step into the path and noticed the skid-steer loader was traveling in reverse toward the victim. The contract worker shouted a warning and tried to alert both the victim and the machine operator, but the operator did not hear the warning and the victim did not react. The rear of the skid-steer loader struck the victim on the right side of his body and rolled over his torso. The operator was not aware he had struck someone. Emergency medical services were called immediately. The victim was in cardiac arrest and was transported to the local hospital for further care. The victim died en route to the hospital.

To prevent future occurrences:

  • Install permanent barriers separating commonly used walkways from areas where heavy equipment is being operated.
  • Develop a policy for workers on-foot to maintain a safe clearance from mobile equipment, use designated pathways and use personal protective equipment such as high-visibility clothing.
  • Implement a comprehensive training program for operators of heavy mobile equipment, including training on appropriate backing procedures.
  • Consider installing back-up alarms and electronic sensors to warn heavy equipment operators of workers who are walking in the immediate work area.

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