Subcontractor Hits Propane Tank with Trailer
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Type:  Lessons Learned

Publisher:  Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, Princeton, NJ

Date: 

Topics:  Vehicle Safety, Operations

Frequently when we make mistakes we hurry to fix them or cover them up. Often the rushed fixes can make things far worse. If the unexpected occurs, stop and take the time to determine the proper solutions.

On October 3, 2017, a subcontract worker was in a rush to move a pickup truck owned by another company. The worker asked the owner to move the pickup truck, but the owner was in a discussion and offered to move it in five minutes. The worker, being impatient, said they could move it themselves, jumped in the truck and started to pull forward. At that point, the front of a small flatbed trailer that was hitched to the truck knocked over a propane tank that had been placed on the ground between the truck and the trailer and wedged it underneath. The worker then tried to correct their mistake by taking a nearby forklift, also owned by another company, to lift the trailer off of the tank. At that point, the owner of the vehicle immediately stopped work.

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