Insure Hauling Peace of Mind
In the event of a work zone accident involving the haul truck, you want peace of mind that the subcontractor will be able to cover the financial repairs to equipment. Above all, you want peace of mind that the truck itself will not cause any life-threatening accident. You can perform checks and balances against danger through the use of insurance and inspection.
Each truck driver must carry between $1 and $2 million of insurance on his vehicle. It’s his responsibility to insure himself, and it’s the contractor’s responsibility to double-check the paperwork. Make sure it’s up to snuff. Of course the certificate of insurance, license and registration are important, but the contractor will want to verify the paperwork is authentic and in order.
Next, have the foreman or dump man on the job site take the initiative to look over the truck when it arrives on site. It’s not his job to inspect each haul truck, of course, but it is everyone’s job to ensure safety. If the back-up alarm isn’t working, that’s cause for immediate dismissal of the truck and driver, and it’s pretty easy to notice when the back-up alarm isn’t sounding.
Many companies have a policy whereby trucks with malfunctioning back-up alarms are kicked off the project before the material they carry is offloaded. That means the driver is responsible for a pricy load of wasted product.
Another item the dump man might be able to notice and bring to the driver’s attention is the functioning of the lights on the truck, the condition of the tires and the condition of the mud flaps. Anyone who’s worked around a paver for a while can tell you the mud flaps take a beating when they get pressed against the roller bars time and again. Some haul trucks employ mud flap lifting devices that pull the flaps out of harm’s way as the truck backs into dumping position. For those vehicles not equipped with such a device, the flaps could get torn and ragged over time. That could warrant a stop by the local police officers or department of transportation (DOT) inspector.
Ultimately, the DOT inspector is the one who looks over the haul truck with a critical eye. As mentioned above, it’s not the paving foreman’s job to inspect the subcontractor’s haul truck. When the certificate of insurance and registration are in order, the contractor has peace of mind that the proper inspections have been performed. The daily once-over is your added insurance that things stay safe for workers.
Keep an Eye Out For…
- Make sure the back-up alarm is working.
- Make sure all lights are working.
- Make sure the truck driver wears his safety vest even when in the cab.
- Make sure the mud flaps, tarp, tailgate, side mirrors and safety decals are clean and in good repair/condition.
- Also look for the trailer hitch, which you will want the haul truck driver to have removed.
Europe Shows Trucking’s Future
Over the last three years, the CONVERGE research initiative, funded by the German Federal Government, has concerned itself with the technical and operational framework of a cooperative architecture for the communication of vehicles with the transport infrastructure, service providers and other vehicles (V2X-communication). One priority has been the development of an access concept, which enables a wide variety of providers to contribute services and then make them available to road users. What does this mean for haul truck drivers? Let’s take a look.
Through its research, CONVERGE has created a basis for the V2X network. Following the example of the Internet, CONVERGE strives to create an “architecture” that allows service providers to interact in a protected network and send out information as needed. Only information that is relevant to the driver’s current geographical position, his/her planned route or general information should reach him, regardless of the access technology he uses.
Horst Wieker is the head of the transport telematics research group at the University of Applied Sciences of the Saarland, and stressed that it is not just about indicating danger. “If traffic reports are intelligently networked with the planned route of a truck and the current availability of truck parking areas, freight transport can be routed more efficiently. This avoids delays at loading ramps and supports the driver compliance with statutory rest periods.”