FACE to FACE - A NY FACE Training Guide for Health and Safety Professionals

  • This training course is available in Portable Document Format (PDF, 1.02MB, 31pg.)

Module 1: Preventing deaths and injuries to public workers while working around mobile equipment

I. Introduction and Course Preparation Tips


  • This guide is meant to help you run a safety course for preventing deaths and injuries to people who work around mobile equipment. It includes examples you can share with workers, questions for discussion, and take away messages. The safety course is broken into 5 different sections:
    1. Getting Started
    2. Example
    3. Discussion
    4. Talking Points
    5. Take Away Messages

    Each section includes tips you can use when presenting the material. The course will take about 30 minutes to complete. Instructor comments have been shaded gray for easy reference.

    Additional materials have been provided at the back of this binder for your review.

Course Preparation Tips

  • Before beginning the training:
    1. Get to know your company's safety rules about:
      • Working around mobile equipment
      • Work zone traffic control policies
      • Communicating hazards to on-site contractors
      • Personal protective equipment
      • Reporting safety incidents
      • Employee consequences for failure to abide by safety rules
    2. Make a list of mobile heavy equipment used on-site and personnel who work with and around the equipment, including contractors. You may want to walk employees around the equipment, teaching them where blind spots are located, etc.
    3. Read through this training guide and look over supporting materials.

II. Training Curriculum

A. Getting Started

  • One goal of this training is to get workers to recognize the hazards of working with and around mobile equipment. A second goal is to teach them ways they can protect themselves and their co-workers. During the first part of the training, give your workers background information about safety problems that can happen with mobile equipment. Examples have been included in the "Supporting Materials" section of your binder. The question and facts below can help you provide background information to workers.
  • Provide your workers with a copy of the "Safety Checklist for Working around Mobile Equipment" located on the next page. Read aloud the "Hazard Warning" to workers and the question and answer below.

HAZARD WARNING! - Workers who work with or around mobile equipment are at risk of serious injury or death.

Every year, many workers in the U.S. are injured by vehicles and mobile equipment while working in the same area at the same time.

About how many workers in the U.S. are killed each year because of being struck by vehicles and mobile equipment while on the job?

  1. 10
  2. 50
  3. 100
  4. 400

Around 400 workers are killed on the job each year when they are struck by vehicles or mobile equipment. These workers leave behind countless family members. The tragedy here is that these deaths can be prevented. Workers have been killed when struck by vehicles whose drivers did not see them. In many of these cases, the workers killed were standing, walking, or working around vehicles that were backing up.


HAZARD WARNING! - Workers who work in or around mobile equipment are at risk of serious injury or death.

Here are some simple ways you can help protect yourself and your co-workers:

When you are operating equipment:

  • Know equipment safety features. Know how they operate and use them properly;
  • Inspect equipment and immediately report problems on safety devices. If these can't be immediately fixed, DO NOT use the machine;
  • Reduce backing whenever possible — it is the most dangerous movement;
  • Know where your blind spots are;
  • Don't rely on mirrors alone - turn and look behind you before backing;
  • Look for people on foot around you;
  • Maintain a safe operating speed;
  • STOP when you are signaled to or anytime you are in doubt;
  • Strictly follow and obey company safety rules;
  • Report unsafe workers and work practices to supervisors.

When you are walking on site:

  • Keep eye contact with the operator. You must see and be seen;
  • Communicate with the traffic control staff;
  • Wear a fluorescent reflective safety vest;
  • Be alert; stay clear; hear warnings; look for hazards;
  • Strictly follow and obey company safety rules.


B. Real-Life Example

  • A useful way to train workers about safety hazards is to present them with real life examples. Pass out copies of the FACE Facts sheet located on the next page to workers and read the example below aloud. A copy of the full report on which this Facts sheet is based has been included in the "Supplemental Materials" section - "Contractor Run Over by Front-end Loader at City Salt Stockyard". After reading the example aloud, use the questions in the "Discussion" section to get workers to talk about why the accident may have happened.


In January 2004, a 42-year-old male machine operator, who was hired by a liquid deicer distributing company as a subcontractor, died after he was run over by a front-end loader at a city salt stockyard in New York. On the day of the incident, the victim was providing customer service at the stockyard including operating a conveyor mixing system to treat salt with the deicer. While the victim was walking around the salt pile, a city equipment operator backed a loader out of a storage shed and struck the victim. The victim was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Contractor Run Over by Front-End Loader at City Salt Stockyard

C. Discussion

  • Questions can be a good way to get people thinking about a lesson. During this part of the training, discuss what caused the mobile equipment fatality you just read. Listed below are questions you can ask and some of the answers you are likely to receive.

    Because some workers might be hesitant to answer right away, you may want to read one of the answers given below. Then, ask workers whether they think the answer you gave was correct. However, don't give an answer right away. It is best to wait at least 10 seconds after you ask a question before you give an answer. People remember things better when they hear them many times or both hear and see it. If possible, write down the answers workers give to questions. Or, if writing is not possible, repeat the answers aloud.


  • What could have gone wrong?
    • Was the worker inexperienced?
    • The victim had worked at this salt stockyard as a contractor for three winters prior to the incident.
  • What did go wrong?
    • Poor hazard communication: There was no procedure for communication between personnel on foot and mobile equipment operators. In some cases, employees may have to leave their vehicles to perform certain work tasks. Equipment operators should be made aware of these conditions.
    • Damaged equipment: The side rearview-mirrors on the loader had been broken off the winter before and had not been replaced. The missing mirrors created a blind spot for the equipment operator which may or may not have directly contributed to the incident. (HAND OUT COPIES OF THE BLIND SPOT DIAGRAM LOCATED ON THE NEXT PAGE TO WORKERS)
    • Lack of safety vests: The victim was not wearing a high visibility safety vest.
  • Who is at risk?
    • Many different workers are at risk including laborers, equipment operators, and related contractor staff.
    • Are you at risk?

D. Talking Points

  • The goal of this part of the training is to get workers talking about their own experiences working in and around mobile equipment. Listed below are questions you can use to get people talking and questions you can use to get people to provide more details. You may also want to include information on the consequences for employees who do not follow established safety rules (e.g., verbal warning for first infraction, written warning, etc.).


  • Have you ever had an accident or near-miss accident that involved mobile equipment?
    • Do you know anyone who has had one?
    • What went wrong?
    • What could have been done to avoid the accident?
  • Have you ever found that the mobile equipment you were about to use had damaged parts?
    • If yes, what did you do?
  • Do you look up when you hear a backup alarm?
  • What are some of the work activities you and your co-workers do that put you at risk?
  • Have you ever observed others engaging in risky behavior?

E. Take Away Messages

  • The training is nearly complete. Before wrapping up, provide workers with a list of things they can do to protect themselves by reviewing the "Safety Checklist for Working around Mobile Equipment" (found in Section A "Getting Started) aloud. These are the key messages you will want workers to have and remember. Once you have finished reviewing the information, ask if anyone has any comments about the advice. Finally, thank workers for their time and ask them to complete the evaluation form located on the next page.

    Evaluation forms should be returned to you. Completed forms should then be send to the NY FACE program. The evaluation will help us to improve this program and make it more useful to workers.

    New York FACE Program
    New York State Department of Health
    Bureau of Occupational Health and Injury Prevention
    Empire State Plaza-Corning Tower, Room 1336
    Albany, New York 12237

The New York State Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (NY FACE) program would like to know if the NY FACE Tailgate Training program was helful to you. Please fill out the questionnaire and return it to your training instructor.

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