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Trucking Employee Survey

SHARP's Trucking Initiative identifies hazards and needs of employees

Injury data from Washington State show that both General Freight Trucking and Specialized Freight Trucking rank in the top 5 industries for lost‑time injuries. The SHARP Trucking Injury Reduction Emphasis (TIRES) project is working with industry leaders to identify root causes of the most frequent types of injuries and to develop effective intervention strategies to reduce risks and costs. This work is partially funded by a grant from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).

We are identifying hazards by analyzing state workers' compensation data, administering statewide surveys of employers and employees and conducting on‑site observations. We are also working to further characterize these hazards by conducting follow‑up interviews with injured workers. Oversight of TIRES activities is provided by a steering committee of industry representatives.

We have been working with our steering committee to create and disseminate prevention strategies and educational materials to help the industry reduce its incidence of high frequency and high cost injuries.

Please call the SHARP program at 1‑888‑667‑4277 or e‑mail SHARP@Lni.wa.gov for information about the project or visit the Trucking Initiative Web page. You can also view information about the TIRES project and find links to other trucking topics from our stakeholders by visiting www.KeepTruckingSafe.org (www.KeepTruckingSafe.org).

Employees provide feedback

In 2006, we conducted a survey of Washington State truck drivers who had a commercial driver's license (CDL) and were employed in the trucking industry. The survey asked drivers about:

  • Their daily work.
  • Perceptions of risks and hazards.
  • Biggest problems with injuries, including causes and possible solutions.
  • Experiences with pain and work‑related injuries.
  • Company safety practices.
  • Overall feelings about the job.

We received almost 400 survey responses from across the state.

Consistent with what employers told us in a 2005 employer survey, the top 2 problem injury types identified by employees were:

  1. Sprains, strains and overexertions.
  2. Slips, trips and falls.

These 2 types of injuries account for about two‑thirds of workers' compensation costs. Employees identified lifting objects that were too heavy as the most common source of sprain and strain injuries. Slippery ramps and docks were described as the most frequent reason for slip, trip and fall injuries.

See the Reducing Injuries in the Trucking Industry (104 KB PDF) summary report for the 2006 Employee Survey Results.

What else is the TIRES Project doing?

As a response to both employer and employee concerns regarding slip, trip and fall injuries, the TIRES project developed and distributed a series of educational pamphlets and posters addressing common risk factors and recommendations for prevention. These materials are available on our Web site: Trucking Initiative.

From July 2007 through June 2008 the TIRES project will focus on sprains, strains and overexertions.

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