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Section 9 - Tipping

Check that tipping operations are carried out safely

Do visiting drivers report to the site manager for any relevant instructions prior to commencing tipping operations?

Drivers should be given full details of the load and delivery conditions, including how they can get there safely.

Drivers visiting a site should have to report to the site operator for any relevant instructions.

When tipping is being arranged, both the haulier and the person receiving the load should exchange written information about the load, safe tipping, the characteristics of the site, a safe route to the site, and safe ways of working.  The driver and workers at the receiving site should be made aware of this information as well, and before the delivery begins.

Are non-essential personnel excluded from tipping areas?

You can remove the risks to people who do not need to be in the tipping area by making sure that they are kept completely clear.

Making sure that everyone is aware tipping is about to happen and only those people involved in the tipping are in the immediate area.

Are tipping operations undertaken on ground that is level and stable, and a location free from overhead hazards such as power lines, pipework, etc?
Where sites are not level and stable, are the tipping faces safe for vehicles involved in tipping operations, eg compacted and no side slopes?

At sites where level and stable tipping places cannot always be guaranteed you will need to make sure that tipping faces are suitable and safe (for example, by making sure that the faces are will compacted, and that there are no significant side slopes.

For tipping over unsupported embankments or faces. The wheel stop will need to be far enough from the edge to make sure the weight of the vehicle does not make the ground collapse.

Are suitably sized wheel-stops provided where vehicles need to reverse prior to tipping? Where possible, and particularly where reversing needs to happen, wheel stops that are large enough to let the driver know to stop should be used, to help position vehicles correctly.
Are drivers clear about when tailgates should be released or removed? The tailgate should be released before tipping and removed if necessary.
Do drivers check that their loads are evenly distributed across the vehicle prior to commencing tipping operations? Before tipping starts, the driver may need to check that the load is evenly distributed across the vehicle.  This is particularly important where:
  • The load might have slipped sideways or too far forwards, risking overloading the tipping gear;
  • The load shifting sideways or backwards could make the vehicle topple over; or
  • There is a risk of the load ‘freezing’ down one side as a result of movement or settling. If this happens, that side could cause an imbalance and cause the vehicle to topple. Care needs to be taken that the load is released evenly.
Are the drivers sufficiently experienced to anticipate loads sticking?

Drivers should be trained in safe tipping, and should understand the limits of what their vehicle can do safely.

Drivers should receive training and instruction in how to anticipate loads sticking or ‘freezing’ in the body.

Do drivers always ensure that the body is completely empty, and drive no more than a few metres forward to ensure the load is clear?

After releasing the load the driver should always make sure that the body is completely empty.

The driver should not drive more than a few metres forward to make sure the load is clear, and should only do this after checking that the load is at the bottom of the tipped body.  If the driver has to leave the cab to do this, they should fully apply the brakes, turn off the engine and (if possible) remove the keys.  Again, the vehicle will always need to be given a wide berth.

Is there a system of maintenance in place for the tipper and the tipping mechanism?

By law, every employer must make sure that work equipment is maintained in an efficient state, in efficient working order and in good repair.

Each vehicle you purchase or hire should come with a handbook giving manufacturer’s guide on regular maintenance.

Poorly maintained tipping vehicles and under-trained operators are common causes of accidents during tipping, for example, overturns usually have the potential to kill people and can be the result of a  number of different problems.

Updated 2013-12-23