Are your drivers loading safely?

August 23, 2023
Are your drivers loading safely?
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In an age where good delivery drivers are in short supply, a new survey has identified an everyday occurrence that is costing companies millions of euro in lost driver hours. 


A study by Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles in the UK, has found that a third of van drivers have injured themselves at least once while loading their van in the past year. The study estimates that across all UK sectors, this could cost as much as £3.7bn annually in lost driver hours. 

Almost 50% of drivers who reported an injury, had to take more than one day off work, while 34% of those injured, reported taking more than a week off due a loading injury. 

The problem appears to be a lack of awareness of correct loading procedures, with the vast majority of drivers thinking they know the dos and don’ts and many taking on heavier items than they should on their own. 

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has teamed up with the British Chiropractic Association to produce some safe loading tips, which although they seem like common sense are all too often ignored: 
  • Before going to lift anything, think about how you have prepared your most important tool for the day, your body. Take five minutes to warm up your body using simple stretches and full body movements like floor-to-ceiling touches.
  • When assessing the object you're about to lift, make sure that you are splitting the load up into manageable chunks, rather than trying to do it all at once. If an object is an awkward shape or size, consider asking a colleague to help you.
  • Ensure that you are engaging your legs when lifting anything. You have a great deal of strength in your legs and buttocks, so use them to drive up from a squat or lunge position to best protect your body.
  • If you are someone who suffers with back pain, try to avoid lifting and twisting with a heavy item. Instead aim to lift the item, and then use your legs to turn rather than twisting through your spine.
  • Once behind the wheel, it's just as important to ensure good posture to avoid back pain - one of the leading reasons for workplace absence.
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