Tips for Safely Extracting Stuck Vehicles

Nina ConnerAgribusiness

By Gina Ekstam for AssuredPartners

Agricultural workers know all too well the risk of trucks and tractors getting stuck in the mud or snow. Unfortunately, it’s during attempts to dislodge a stuck vehicle that serious injuries occur.

Safety training is one of the best ways to avoid an accident. Techniques may vary, but all safe towing practices should consider:

  • Soil condition
  • How deep the truck or tractor is stuck
  • Stuck vehicle weight
  • Towing vehicle weight

When a vehicle becomes stuck, it’s important not to rush. Mistakes are more likely to happen when workers hurry to extract the vehicle, increasing the chance of property damage and injury. Instead, assess the following:

  • How stuck is the vehicle, and how much damage may result if you continue?
  • Are the axles dragging?
  • Is the vehicle bellied-out, resting on the frame, or rear-end housing?
  • How much does the cargo weigh, and will it shift?
  • What is the condition of the ground under the towing vehicle?
  • How can you protect workers and bystanders from injury and flying debris?
  • Is the vehicle leaning?
  • Where are the power lines?

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