A coroner has raised concerns about the dangers of coupling and uncoupling trailers to tractor cabs after an HGV driver died in a rollaway incident in Widnes.
Cheshire’s assistant coroner Charlotte Keighley has written to haulage and warehousing firm 3D Trans demanding it takes action to prevent future deaths following the incident in November 2021 in which David Lyth was killed.
The driver was killed when he became trapped while coupling a trailer to his cab at 3D Trans’ premises.
Keighley said Lyth had complained of an issue with the air cables on his trailer and so he had been advised to collect a new trailer from the haulier’s yard.
However, as he began coupling up, the trailer rolled back and he became trapped between the two vehicles and died of asphyxiation.
The coroner said that during the course of her investigations, she found there had been four rollaway incidents involving drivers working for 3D Trans – two of which occurred since Lyth’s death.
In her letter to 3D Trans and the Health and Safety Executive, Keighley said: “I acknowledge that these incidents involve different circumstances and that only one resulted in a fatality.
“I received evidence that following each of the incidents, refresher training was provided and various measures were put in place at the yard to physically prevent the vehicles or trailers rolling away.
“In addition to this, signage has been placed on the tractor and trailer units to serve as a reminder to drivers of the importance of securing the parking brakes on the tractor and trailer units.
She added: “I have concerns regarding the provision of regular and periodic training for all drivers in respect of coupling and uncoupling procedures.”
3D Trans was approached for comment.