Safe Driving Techniques Around Stockpiles
Dump trucks sometimes unload materials near the edge of stockpiles. In 2015, a dump truck operator was killed when
his truck went over the edge at a dumping point. WorkSafeNB reminds dump truck operators, equipment operators,
contractors and employers of the hazards associated with this task.
Some employers/operators prohibit the practice of
backing up to the edge of a stockpile. Where this
activity is not prohibited, following proper backing
procedures is critical.
Points to consider:
- Most of a dump truck’s weight is on the rear axle,
creating even more stress on the edge of the
- Even at its angle of repose, a stockpile, because
its material is loosely placed and in thick layers,
is not very stable and can easily collapse.
- Ensure equipment is in good working order and wear the seatbelt.
Operators should also:
- Only use the berm as a visual indicator and not to stop the
- Check for cracks or other indications of soil failure before backing
up to a dump point.
- When backing up toward the dump point, travel in a straight line
directly toward the edge (perpendicular to the edge), and not on
- Drive slowly and come to a gradual stop when backing up near the
edge of a stockpile.
- Perform short dumps if there are concerns about the dumping
area’s stability or if materials are being removed from the bottom
of the stockpile.