Preventing Backovers In Construction

One of the major causes of accidents and injuries in construction occurs when vehicles unintentionally back into workers who may be performing duties on a worksite. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, such backovers were responsible for 143 deaths between 2003 and 2010. In order to protect workers from backovers, NIOSH and State FACE agencies have identified ways that employers and workers can reduce and/or eliminate accidents and injuries from backing vehicles. See these following recommendations to keep workers safe:

  • Develop, implement, and enforce standard operating procedures that address worker safety and minimize work to be performed near vehicles and equipment
  • „Use equipment designed to minimize blind areas and equipment with proximity warning systems.
  • „Establish safe work practices for night work and backing equipment, requiring high visibility apparel.„
  • Design worksites to minimize backing vehicles and equipment [RWZSHCA 2005].„
  • Provide adequate oversight and supervision by a competent person.„
  • Ensure that drivers only back under the direction of a spotter.„
  • Ensure daily communication between the prime and sub-contractors to discuss any changes or revisions in construction traffic flow.„
  • Channel construction vehicles and equipment away from workers using visual safety devices (retro reflective barrels, delineators, portable barricades, cones).„
  • Install signs to guide workers on foot with respect to traffic areas, vehicle flow, and worker-free zone