Further tests to establish the safe maximum weight of a pallet for tail-lift deliveries have been carried out after the previous results from the HSE were found to be inaccurate.

Concerns have been growing that delivery drivers are expected to handle pallets that are sometimes more than 1,000kg in weight, placing their health and even safety in danger.

This was heightened after the death of HGV driver Petru Soimu Pop last November, who was crushed while making a tail-lift delivery to a residential address in High Wycombe.

Guidance is due to be updated, but not before the HSE conducts research into the push and pull forces required by drivers when manually manoeuvring pallets.

However, MT revealed last month there had been a delay after the first test results were found to be inaccurate due to faulty measuring equipment.

To address this, the HSE used its facility in Buxton on 7 September to conduct a second series of tests.

A spokesman said: “In March, the HSE undertook some indicative testing of push and pull forces required in manually manoeuvring pallets on vehicle beds and tail-lifts, with members of the group present. The results indicated significant forces may be required to move pallets of various weights and that further detailed testing was needed.

“This testing has required more in-depth planning. To be effective, the testing needs to cover a range of scenarios and needs to be done in a scientific environment rather than on a site.”

The spokesman was unable to say when the results would be made available.

Ray Engley, RHA head of technical services, who chairs a working group on the issue, said: “The response from the industry has been generally positive and there appears to be a will and enthusiasm to address this issue.”