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HAZARD ALERT

Load Binder Safety

A log truck driver was waiting in line to cross the scales and was removing his load binders when a log fell off and struck him. He suffered bruising to his lower back.

Load binders are valuable construction tools, however, there are safety hazards that may arise with their misuse. There are two types of load binders: ratchet type binders and lever type binders. There are fewer hazards associated with using ratchet-type binders when compared to lever-type binders.

Recommended Preventive Action

  • All employees who use load binders should be given written procedures along with training on their proper use.
  • Routinely check load binders for wear, bending, and cracks. Do not use the load binder if bending or cracks are present.
  • Look up and inspect the load before removing straps and ask for help if any pieces are in danger of falling.
  • Do not operate a load binder while you or someone else is standing on the load.
  • Position the load binder so it can be operated from the ground, and ensure your footing is secure.
  • Move the handle with caution using an open hand, as the handle may whip. Keep your body clear.
  • Never use a cheater pipe or handle extender to tighten or release a load.
  • Do not attempt to close or open the binder with more than one person.
  • When applying a lever type load binder, always position the load binder so the handle is tightened in a downward manner.
  • Protect the edges of the load binder from direct contact with sharp edges or abrasive surfaces.
  • While under tension, a load binder must not bear against an object as it will cause side load.
  • During and after tightening, check the load binder handle position. Be sure it is in the locked position. For lever type load binders, the bottom side should touch the tie-downs.

Ratchet Type

Lever Type

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