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With the forecasts being so dire, do Transport Firms have to do risk assessments before sending high sided vehicles out in this weather?
Buses used to do a tilt test, but the weight of engine,gearbox and axle made sure they stayed on the road especially as most passengers preferred the lower deck. It is mainly high-sided and empty lorries that are at risk but the Highways Agency sometimes shut exposed bridges in high winds.
"do Transport Firms have to do risk assessments before sending high sided vehicles out in this weather?" In a word no.
Transport managers put drivers under pressure to drive whatever the conditions, they in turn are under pressure to not risk losing a contract. The directors of the companies being serviced by the transport sector don't give a damn as long as their shops are stocked at all times. There is certainly a case for the dreaded H&S to have an influence in transport operations during sever weather conditions. When lorries start going over like ninepins, and they still keep coming, just like lemmings over the cliff edge, that is when someone should accept that delivery targets will and should be disrupted. Cranes aren't allowed to operate in high winds, so why do we sent trucks out in the same conditions?
Ridged box bodies are the most stable in high winds, cutainsiders the worst, especially when empty as the side curves in like a sail, and a sail is the ideal device to capture the force of the wind and convert the energy into movement, which if it's a sideways force on a motorway, is highly dangerous.
Quickbeam I thought as much. How does management get away with ignoring H & S Regulations? Surely they have to ensure that their staff are working in a safe environment.
Because there is no specific rules to bind them like cranes which are rated by type as to the maximum safe wind speed that they can be operated in.
Any driver who sets out with an empty curtain-sided lorry and doesn't tie them back should have their licence removed forthwith, as they're a danger to themselves and other road-users.
Most transport managers will have up to date weather forecasts and instruct drivers to re-route if there's a danger of a bridge or exposed road being closed to high-sided vehicles, it makes sense as it'll be quicker in the long run driving round than having to turn back an re-route
Why waste time on this type of futile exercise when any driver will know if side winds are dangerous. I have a medium size motor caravan and know when the wind is strong! Forget H&S and use COMMON sense.
OK you asked a Question, Just think about this one from when I was in Wales Last Week went to Betwis-is-Coid no Idea if that's how they spelled it, but hears the point about a BUS one of those that take old bidis out for a outing pulled up lets them off with front Near Side tyre showing that it was Half Bold had tread re-cut so that canvas was showing, when son in Law told him that is bus Driver about it, he said that there was two tyres on the back, worse than the front one. That's why you see buses down in a Ravine on TV with Lives lost
"Any driver who sets out with an empty curtain-sided lorry and doesn't tie them back..." The trouble with doing that is that you can end up with the roof being peeled back like a sardine can! A lot of companies will dismiss drivers that do that as the roofs are only pop riveted on.
"Most transport managers will have up to date weather forecasts..." They look out the window and say, "It'll be OK, just get on with it, or your replacement will..."
My dad drove trucks for years and always, repeat always, drove with the curtains open when empty. If he had to keep the curtains closed because of a loose roof he would carry ballast.
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