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Truck driver killed when front-end loader secured by chains on a lowboy trailer broke free and rolled onto cab.

Michigan State University
Morgantown, WV: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, FACE 02MI040, 2002 Nov; :1-12
On April 10, 2002, a 56-year old truck driver with 22 years of experience died when a front-end loader weighing between 60,000 and 65,000 pounds that was being transported on a 50-ton lowboy trailer broke free from its securing chains and rolled onto the cab crushing him. The loader transmission was in neutral and the parking brake was set. The victim used at least four 3/8-inch chains rated at 6,600 pounds (the exact number is unknown) to secure the loader. Five binders were found at the scene. One chain appeared to be improperly attached to the loader's maintenance ladder, one chain appeared to be attached to an attachment point on the loader. The remaining chain attachments to the loader are unknown. If four chains were used, the load exceeded the aggregate working load limit of the chains. Also unknown is where each of the chain hooks and/or binder hooks were attached to the trailer. Based on the police report of the incident, at least one chain hook/binder was improperly attached to the trailer bed. One chain appeared to have an oversized hook. During transport, the driver stopped suddenly between two bridges. Skid marks from the truck were present on the roadway. It appears that a sudden stop caused sufficient force on the chains to break them. The loader rolled forward over the 5th wheel and onto the top of the truck cab. The cab was crushed, and the driver was declared dead at the scene. Recommendations: 1. Companies should require and train employees to use manufacturer identified cargo attachment points and "D" rings on the trailer using the appropriate number of tiedown assemblies. 2. Companies should ensure that consistency is maintained with the working load limits of all components of a tiedown assembly. 3. Companies should ensure employees inspect all components of a tiedown assembly to ensure that they are in good working order and are an appropriate and consistent size. 4. Additionally, MIFACE recommends that all employers develop standard operating procedures and provide employee training to educate workers about the January 2004 FMCSA new cargo securement rules.
Accident-analysis; Accident-potential; Accident-prevention; Accidents; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Safety-education; Safety-equipment; Safety-practices; Safety-measures; Traumatic-injuries; Region-5; Work-practices; Work-analysis; Work-performance; Occupational-accidents; Truck-drivers; Training; Motor-vehicles; Transportation-industry; Transportation-workers
Publication Date
Document Type
Field Studies; Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation
Funding Type
Cooperative Agreement
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
FACE-02MI040; Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-CCU-521205
SIC Code
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Performing Organization
Michigan State University
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division