Vehicle restraints are devices that attach to trailers to keep them from separating from the dock during loading/unloading. They were first introduced in 1980 as a better, more effective solution than simple wheel chocks and are recognised industry-wide as an important part of dock safety.
Why are wheel restraints important?
Loading docks are one of the most dangerous areas of a warehouse or other facility. With the increased activity of trucks, pedestrians, and forklifts all coming and going, the risks of an incident increase. These incidents can be very serious or even fatal. They can also be extremely costly, with medical care, product loss and equipment damage all incurring direct costs, as well as the indirect costs of lost time and increased insurance premiums.
One of the most common causes of costly accidents is when a trailer separates from the dock and creates a gap. There are five main ways this can happen:
Trailer creep (aka, dock walk) – This is when the trailer gradually moves away from the dock due to the ongoing impact and momentum of the forklift travelling in and out of the trailer. Eventually, the leveller lip loses contact with the bed of the trailer and results in a dangerous gap between the trailer and the dock.
Early departure – When the truck driver mistakenly pulls away from the dock before loading operations are complete, the results can be disastrous. This is usually due to a lack of communication between truck drivers and dock workers.
Landing gear failures – If landing gear is weak or corroded it can give way under the impact of loading and the spotted trailer collapses to the ground.
Trailers upending – A form of trailer tip-over, usually with pup trailers, where the first heavy load placed in the nose of the trailer causes the rear of the trailer to rise so it’s no longer lined up with the dock.
Collision with adjacent trucks – Another form of tip-over whereby a truck departing from one dock position collides with a trailer in the adjacent position, causing it to tip.
A proper wheel restraint system prevents all of these dangerous situations and keeps your people and products safe.
Types of vehicle restraints
There are several different types of vehicle restraints available. One of the main differences you’ll find is between RIG restraints and wheel restraints. RIG restraints connect to the rear impact guard of the truck, while wheel restraints connect to the wheels. Both are good options, however, wheel-based options tend to be more reliable and secure, protecting against all possible scenarios.
We offer two types of wheel restraints:
The manual truck restraint is designed to secure a wide range of trailers, including those with or without a rear impact guard, to the loading dock, and is an essential tool to ensure safe and efficient loading and unloading operations.
This reliable and flexible solution provides maximum safety for loading and unloading operations, preventing accidents caused by unexpected trailer movement or separation from the dock, which can result in costly property damage, personal injury, and even death.
The Global Wheel Lock is the ultimate vehicle restraint system designed to enhance loading dock safety and protect against surprise vehicle movement, making it a must-have solution for any business looking to ensure the safety of their employees and cargo.
The original and most trusted trailer restraint system on the market, featuring flexible automatic positioning, consistent on-centre trailer positioning, and a low maintenance design that performs optimally in all weather conditions, making it a must-have for any loading dock.
In combination with a full dock safety system, wheel restraints are a no-brainer for protecting your people, products, and profits.