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INDUSTRY BODY STATEMENT ON QUICK HITCHES

Plant Safety Group issues statement on excavator quick hitch safety

The construction industry Strategic Forum Plant Safety Group panel is working on excavator quick hitch issues and has issued an interim statement to clarify some misunderstandings and misrepresentation about quick hitch safety. 

The panel has confirmed that there has been no change in the law regarding the use of existing semi-automatic quick hitches.

Kevin Minton from the Construction Plant-hire Association (CPA), speaking on behalf of the panel said: “It is not a question of semi-automatic quick hitches being “illegal” – if a Safe System of Work is in place, they can be used. When bad consequences arise, it is generally from ignorance and poor planning.” 

The panel acknowledges that some contractors have recently made their procurement policies public, and notes that some well-informed and considered decisions have been made.

Mr Minton commented: “Each contractor has opted for a solution that suits their work, and provided they don’t proclaim this to be universally applicable, they should not be criticised for their choice of policy.”

Best Practice Guidance will be available later in 2009. In the interim, the panel is publicising the eight steps that contractors, plant owners and others should be taking now. The precautions are applicable to all types of quick hitch – manual, semi automatic, and all fully automatic types.

Comment: Readers might also wish to use our Excavator Quick Hitch Checklist which is based on current HSE guidance on quick hitches.

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3 Responses to “INDUSTRY BODY STATEMENT ON QUICK HITCHES”

  1. EXCAVATOR FATALITY | PP Construction Safety News Desk Says:

    […] in the news in recent times following a rise in the number of fatalities associated with the use of quick hitch devices. It is not clear whether the quick hitch issues are involved in this tragic incident. It highlights […]

  2. GROUNDWORKS SAFETY FOR SMALLER BUILDERS | PP Construction Safety News Desk Says:

    […] and equipment, including quick hitches and […]

  3. EXCAVATOR QUICK HITCH UPDATE | PP Construction Safety News Desk Says:

    […] Fatalities, serious injuries and other incidents involving the unsafe use of quick hitches have contined despite guidance issued earlier in 2009. […]