Organisational Factors » LTA parkup

32Uncontrolled Movement of Vehicles

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Brief Description of Incident/Accident & Description of Consequences/Outcomes:

Several recent high potential incidents involving mine/quarry vehicles have prompted the issue of this Safety Bulletin. Brief details of some incidents are given below:

An off-highway dump truck on hire ran-away, a few minutes after it was parked and travelled about 100 metres along a haul road. It went off the road and fell down a precipice causing extensive damage to trees along its path and then rolling over. The truck was a write-off. The incident had the potential to kill anyone on its path. The truck had been parked on slightly sloping ground. The park brake had been applied fully, but was ineffective.

On his return after crib, a truck driver found the haul-truck he parked outside crib-room had moved away about 20 metres, fortunately only causing minor damage.

While alighting from his 4WD utility after parking, the vehicle ran backwards. The driver tried to jump back in to pull the park brake lever when he was knocked to the ground by the door and run-over by the front wheel. He was lucky to have escaped with a broken rib and massive internal bruising.

A front-end-loader reversed and hit a visitor's sedan car. The visitors were loader manufacturer's technicians who wanted to download maintenance information from the loader's computer. They arrived during heavy rain and therefore wanted to get close to the loader to avoid getting wet. The car with its occupants stopped right behind the loader unaware that it was about to reverse. A possible multiple fatality was avoided only because the loader driver stopped when he heard the car ’s horn.

Identified Root Causes:

LTA parkup, LTA brake systems, LTA maintenance work method

Energy Type(s) Involved:

Uncontrolled movement of equipment

Root & Contributing Cause(s):

LTA awareness

LTA brake systems

LTA hazard identification

LTA parkup

LTA vehicle proximity

LTA work method

Stated or Potential Consequence(s):

Potential Fatality

Preventative/Recommended/Accepted Steps of Risk Mitigation, Points of Interest:

Vehicle operations, traffic management and associated controls must be reviewed and monitored regularly to ensure that they are appropriate and site work instructions/rules are followed. They must keep up with the changing conditions at site. The following controls should be considered:

Suitably designed, designated parking areas for all vehicles (e.g.. flat area, stop blocks etc), and if necessary separate parking for visitors. This should include haul trucks being loaded.

Parking rules to minimise the effects of possible run-away. Update and maintain appropriate traffic signs. Operator handbooks/instructions to be supplied and understood by drivers. Monitor compliance with traffic rules and take appropriate action. Brake condition checks and brake system maintenance on all vehicles, including hired/contractor's vehicles.

Parkbrakes on most haul trucks, even when new, are not effective on grades above 15% (approx. 1:7). Some older models may be even less effective. Operators must be aware of such limitations and implement control measures accordingly. Effectiveness of parkbrakes on most light vehicles is also limited and dependent on the force applied at the lever and many other factors. Therefore, they should not be totally relied upon to control movement of parked vehicles.

EMESRT Risk(s):

Brake systems release over time

ISOLgate Checklist(s):

Download Brake systems release over time Checklist.


Queensland Government Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (DEEDI)


Here are the results.


Reference Type:

Safety Bulletin #8

EMESRT Risk(s):

Brake systems release over time

Mine Type:

Any Mine Type


Potential & Kinetic - Mechanical > Object(s) in motion - Equipment at speed





Australia, Queensland

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