Fatal telehandler incident (13 October 2020)
A farm worker died after he was run over by a 3-tonne telehandler as it was reversing. The telehandler operator was transporting straw bales from a stack into a straw chopper located near a poultry shed. As the operator reversed to pick up another bale from the stack, the worker was run over by the telehandler.
The telehandler including its location
Site specific traffic management control measures must be implemented to manage the risk of mobile plant causing harm to pedestrians.
Keep people and vehicles apart. Have clearly defined pedestrian only spaces and vehicle only spaces, by:
- implementing fixed and secured barriers that prevent people accessing vehicle only areas,
- defining pedestrian areas through permanent or temporary barriers or markings, or
- use high impact traffic control barriers e.g. bollards or temporary structures.
If it is not reasonably practicable to separate people and vehicles, implement additional controls to minimise the risks such as:
- using devices like reversing sensors, reversing cameras, mirrors, rotating lights or audible reversing alarms
- have a spotter direct the reversing vehicle (the spotter must remain in visible contact with the driver at all times)
- provide clearly identified designated reversing areas
- restrict the use of mobile phones by drivers and pedestrians.
Develop a traffic management plan for the site which covers controls and procedures. Further to that, train, instruct and supervise your workers on the traffic management plan.
Workplace traffic management guidance material - Safe Work Australia
Plant: Your health and safety guide (PDF 520kb) – WorkSafe Victoria
Paying attention to whether or not your everyday tasks are done safely could be the very thing that prevents an injury to yourself or your workmates.
This short video will help you do a quick refresh of your basic safety practices when working in a goods yard, freight terminal or any workplace that requires you to be around trucks or forklifts.
Video: view time: 2 minutes 17 seconds.
Being hit by a moving object is one of the leading causes of fatalities in the manufacturing industry. Listen to SafeWork NSW Inspector Brian Hughes share his stories and his top tips for staying safe.
Video: view time: 2 minutes 27 seconds.