Log truck flips over on recently-worked road

Location: 
Kettle River (Okanagan Valley region)
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2011-07-27
Company Name: 
Tolko Industries Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

Grader was pulling ditch from the road junction to the first bridge on the road. The grader operator was gathering material to reduce the out-sloping on the road. A logging truck driver waited for the grader at the bridge for approximately 10 minutes until the grader passed the truck before proceeding up the hill. The grader operator told the truck driver that there might be obstructions on the road and to proceed with caution.

The truck was trying to avoid a large rock as well as the grader berm, narrowing the road. After passing the rock, the truck attempted to cross the berm, however the trailer was too close to the edge of the road. The shoulder of the road (approximately 75-90 cm) sloughed off and the trailer started to go over the bank. The force and momentum of the trailer caused the entire unit to flip, landing upside-down over the bank.

The driver was able to exit through the driver side door, sustaining only minor bruising to his elbow and forearm.

 Root Causes:

• Road conditions were altered by the grader

• Truck driver decision to manoeuvre the logging truck too close to the road’s edge

• Truck driver decision not to wait for grader to clear off the berm

• Road was saturated due to recent rainstorms, making the shoulder soft

• Narrow road, slightly out sloped at the point of the accident

• Ditch pulling on narrow road surface during time of active hauling

Learnings and Suggestions: 

1. Where possible, avoid pulling ditches on narrow road surfaces at time of active hauling or pull ditches in short sections, then clear the berm before proceeding to the next section.

2. Continue to monitor road traffic on radios and use signage where appropriate.

3. Equipment operators must identify possible hazards to passing vehicles.

4. Equipment operators will instruct vehicles to stop and wait if they feel the conditions they have created make it unsafe to proceed.

5. Vehicles travelling on bush roads need to be aware of soft road conditions after prolonged periods of precipitation.

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Jason McLeod, RPF – Tolko Industries Ltd. 250-547-1241 or e-mail: jason.mcleod@tolko.com  

File attachments
Log truck flips over on recently-worked road.pdf
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