How to safely transport people and equipment in vehicles

Information on this page can help reduce the risk of injury when transporting people and equipment. 


Systems to safely transport people and equipment in vehicles

The following safety measures can eliminate or reduce the risk of injuries when transporting people and equipment:

  • Provide workers with information, instruction, training and supervision in relation to work procedures and the use of equipment.
  • Have a system that includes full, accurate and up-to-date information about people being transported and their specific care needs, and information about the equipment requiring transport.
  • Ensure workers are trained in the safest methods of transporting each person and/or equipment, depending on the person’s needs or the equipment being transported.
  • Identify whether the person being transported has behavioural issues which may present a risk during transport.
  • Have a system to assess and screen people being transported, including an assessment of occupational violence risks.
  • Provide information and training on risk factors associated with occupational violence. For example, measures in place to control risk, workplace policy and procedures and emergency and post-incident responses. The WorkSafe website has information and resources about dealing with occupational violence.
  • Have systems in place to inform transport providers about people being transported and their specific needs.
  • Where appropriate, engage a specialist transport provider to transport the person and/or equipment.
  • Make sure vehicles are suitable for transporting people and/or equipment. Two-door cars, four-wheel drive vehicles or cars with low seats might not be appropriate.
  • Before transporting people or equipment, assess the departure and arrival points and identify suitable parking spaces with adequate access.
  • Different activities might require multiple workers. Provide an appropriate number of workers to move people and equipment safely.
  • Schedule sufficient travel time. Allow time for traffic, parking and the transfer of people or equipment.
  • Ensure a backup plan is in place in case of vehicle breakdown. Make sure workers understand and can follow the backup plan.
  • Provide workers accompanying people being transported with communication equipment that is tested and maintained.
  • Regularly assess the working environment to check if the circumstances or the needs of the person being transported have changed, or need to change.
  • Transporting people and/or equipment may require the use of a vehicle with special mechanisms or devices such as, for example, a swivel seat, height-adjustable tailgate, hoist or storage solutions. Ensure the transport vehicle has the required mechanisms and devices to safely transport the person and /or equipment.

Safely transporting equipment in vehicles

Consider the following safety measures to eliminate or reduce the risk of injuries when transporting equipment:

  • Remove the need to transport equipment by hiring equipment to leave at the person’s home, or hire equipment at the destination of the person being transported.
  • Select equipment that is light, foldable and easy to transport. If necessary, refer the person who requires equipment to an aid and equipment program.
  • Use appropriate trolleys to transport equipment or items. Examples of appropriate trolleys include height-adjustable or fold-up trolleys with wheels large enough to roll on surfaces which may be uneven, rough or resistant, such as carpet and gravel.
  • Use load restraints to stop equipment or objects moving inside the vehicle and potentially becoming projectiles.
  • Use aids such as cargo barriers, car boot organisers, slide out trays and drawers to arrange, store or slide equipment into and out of vehicles.

WorkSafe Advisory Service

WorkSafe's advisory service is available between 7:30am and 6:30pm Monday to Friday. If you need more support, you can also contact WorkSafe using the Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS National) or the National Relay Service.

1800 136 089 More contact options

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