Articulated dump truck safety management (part 2): The 5 most common reasons for accidents

Lifting the lid on our approach to articulated dump truck safety management (part 1)

Do you know the main reasons why articulated dump trucks topple over? Are you confident you can spot the warning signs on your site? What processes do you have in place to manage this major risk?

These are three of the key questions we were left considering after conducting a nationwide review into articulated dump truck-related incidents from 2014 to last year.

It’s a well-known fact that dump trucks have a habit of becoming unstable or rolling over, mainly because of a) their design and b) the uneven terrain they’re used in. But what’s not common knowledge is the high level of complacency surrounding this major health and safety risk within the construction industry.

As one of the UK’s leading plant hire, our aim is to educate the industry about the importance of articulated dump truck safety

We started by conducting an industry-wide analysis into the cause of rollovers at sites where our articulated dump trucks have been hired. So far, we’ve carried out 20 site visits across the country and discovered there are several reasons why articulated dump truck safety doesn’t appear to be particularly high on people’s agendas. For example, some operators simply aren’t aware of the best practice steps they can take, while site management of haul roads can be poor.

Our analysis also revealed there’s a lack of consistency and personal accountability among operators and wider site staff when using articulated dump trucks

While many dump trucks are fitted with safety features that are designed to prevent damage and danger to operators, incidents can still occur. However, the key is to learn from these incidents, not to fall into the trap of brushing over them or not reporting them for fear of the repercussions (our analysis also uncovered a tendency among operators to avoid reporting near misses amid concerns they might be blamed for it).

It’s why we launched our Elite Operator Programme, to help eradicate this culture and encourage more of an industry-wide, proactive approach to responsible articulated dump truck management, head-on.

Our training is tailored to sites or operations. For example, for sites, we may attend and consult with site managers on best practice tactics for managing trucks, and cover issues as wide-ranging as blue regeneration, stock pile and road haulage management. One of our dump truck operators, who recently attended one of our sessions, said he found the subjects we focused on particularly interesting.

“We covered topics that I never even knew existed. It was nice to be able to ask questions and get answers without the usual reprisals you might receive on a typical site.” he said.

The other element of our training programme involves hands-on learning. Using mobile, articulated dump truck simulator software, we visit sites and training centres to recreate scenarios and discuss the risks, reactions and consequences with site staff. Ultimately, all of the team members, regardless of their role, are provided with valuable insight into using dump trucks though the eyes of an operator.

Want to find out more about our articulated dump truck awareness programme or book a site induction? Call us on 020 8900 0000 or email us at

Want to know the main reasons why articulated dump truck accidents occur? Read the second part of this blog here.