Sector - Fleet

Dumper Safety Guidance available for comment

The Construction Plant-hire Association (CPA) is leading the publication of a good practice guide on the safe operation of forward tipping dumpers.

Following a number of serious incidents involving forward tipping dumpers, such as overturns and individuals being struck by dumpers, a draft document has been put together for public comment. The draft document and a comments form can be downloaded from and the closing date for comments is set for Friday 11th January 2019.

An Industry Forum for Dumpers was formed in late 2016, following concerns from the construction plant sector, with the overall objective of avoiding future incidents. A major open meeting was held in September last year, hosted by the CPA and CECA (Civil Engineering Contractors Association), where it was decided a total of seven principles would be used as a basis of an industry initiative action plan including the production of a safe use publication. The CPA agreed to produce comprehensive guidance through the Strategic Forum Plant Safety Group.

The SFPSG Dumper Development Group was subsequently formed to start work on the Good Practice Guide in early 2018. Members of the group include plant hirers and owners, clients, contractors, users, manufacturers, importers and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

The guidance includes topics such as Operational Factors; Management and Supervision Requirements; Training and Information; Segregation/Exclusion Zones; Dumper Specifications; Machine Selection and Compatibility; and Ground Conditions.

One of the main messages of the safe use guidance is that the use of a dumper should not be an automatic choice. The correct identification of the most appropriate machine should be the first step followed by effective planning, supervision and the use of competent people if dumpers are to be used safely. The use of dumpers fitted with a cab is becoming common, for which the guidance outlines some of the issues and considerations that need to be made in terms of allowing an operator to remain seated during the loading process.

All comments received will be reviewed by the group with the amendments and additions made accordingly. This should allow the final release of the document by Easter 2019. The Plant Safety Group for Dumpers is keen to release the guidance at the earliest opportunity to mitigate further incidents, but stress that with rapid technical and operational developments occurring with dumpers, the guidance may be subject to continual future updates.

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