Common injuries from unloading trailers:
- Pulling or straining muscles
- Back injuries
- Cuts and scrapes
- Foot and toe injuries from dropping cargo
Steps for How to Safely Unload a Trailer
- Park the trailer on level ground and set the parking brake.
- Chock the wheels of the trailer to prevent it from moving when you start to unload it.
- Lower the ramp of the trailer. You can do this by hand or with a winch. If you’re using a winch, make sure that it is properly secured before you start to lower the ramp.
- Remove any load-bearing equipment from your vehicle. This includes things like ball mounts and cargo carriers.
- Start to unload your cargo from the trailer. Make sure that you do this slowly and carefully so that you don’t damage anything.
- Once you’re finished unloading, raise the ramp of the trailer and secure it.
More Tips for Safely Unloading a Trailer
- Never leave your trailer unattended while it’s still hitched to your vehicle. If you need to leave for any reason, make sure that someone else is there to watch the trailer for you.
- Always unload in a well-lit area so that you can see what you’re doing.
- If something begins to fall off the trailer never try to catch it. Move out of the way and let it fall. Broken cargo is not ideal but injuries are worse.
- Ensure the path is clear before moving heavy objects. Check behind you to see if anyone or anything is in the way while moving. Even better, have someone help guide you if possible.
- Move slowly and stop often to check that everything is still clear.
Safety tips for heavy lifting
- Lift with your legs, not your back
- Keep your back straight and bend at the knees
- Keep the object close to your body
- Use a dolly or other equipment if possible.
- Have a co-worker help you if the load is too heavy for one person to handle.
Just follow these simple steps and you’ll be able to unload your trailer without damaging your vehicle, cargo, or yourself.
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