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Ohio State University Extension


Struck-by Incidents for Trainers and Supervisors

Tailgate Safety Training for Landscaping and Horticultural Services
Agriculture and Natural Resources
Agricultural Safety and Health Program

Objective: Prevent struck-by incidents.

Trainer’s Note

Poor housekeeping and messy work areas contribute to struck-by incidents. For this module:

  • Explain the information below on potential hazards and how to avoid them.
  • Demonstrate the right method to handle materials.
  • Ask workers to brainstorm for injuries that could occur as a result of flying or falling objects or moving vehicles.
  • Ask workers to brainstorm a specific list of struck-by hazards in your workplace.
  • Ask workers to brainstorm ways to eliminate or lessen those hazards.
  • Review the important points.
  • Have workers take the True/False quiz to check their learning.


Struck-by incidents are those where an object hits the worker. These incidents are frequently related to material handling and housekeeping. Poorly stacked material may fall or slide. Objects blocking aisles could cause bumps or tripping. Overhead storage shelves, racks, hangers, aisles, passageways, and doors can be a source of danger. Careless work habits can make hazards worse.

Struck-by incidents can also occur during tree trimming, pruning, and felling. The tree or tree limbs can fall and strike workers on the ground or in the tree. Bent limbs can also strike workers when the limb is released and springs back.

Potential Struck-By Incident Hazards

  • Tools or loose parts left on window ledges, shelves, cranes, or working platforms.
  • Tools left unsecured on vehicle racks.
  • Objects leaning against walls, racks, posts, or equipment.
  • Inadequate guarding on belts or no side barriers on conveyors traveling from one level to another.
  • Unmarked low beams or pipes.
  • No screen guard on equipment or poor or incomplete screening to guard against objects flying off the equipment.
  • Weak overhead supports or poor stacking of materials.
  • Rakes left on the ground with tines up.

Eliminate Hazards

  • Don’t leave tools or loose parts on window ledges, shelves, cranes, or working platforms. If you see any left loose, report them or remove them.
  • Leave guards or screens in place on equipment as it was manufactured.
  • Mark low beams, pipes, and ceilings with proper Low Clearance—Caution signs.
  • Stack and store objects properly.
  • If there is a potential danger from overhead hazards, wear an approved hard hat or bump hat. For more details, refer to the Tailgate Safety Training module Protecting the Head.
  • Use falling object protective structures (FOPS) on equipment.
  • Be alert and report all hazards.

Aisles and Doors

  • Keep aisles and passageways clear and well marked.
  • Allow safe aisle and door clearance to prevent getting caught or knocking down material.
  • If a door swings out into a hallway, mark the door swing on the floor.
  • Never stand in front of a windowless, swinging door.
  • Before working near a door, post a warning sign or prop the door open. This is especially important if working from a ladder.
  • Do not push a door open rapidly or forcefully. Someone may be on the other side.
  • When approaching double doors, follow signs indicating which door to use.

Pay Attention

  • Watch where you are going.
  • Do not get distracted by conversations.
  • Approach a corner or intersection from the center of the hall. Plan to walk to the right, reducing the chance of oncoming collisions.

Review These Important Points

  • Wear a hard hat or bump hat if necessary for the job.
  • Watch for falling objects or items that block aisles.
  • Keep all screens and guards in place.
  • Use safe storage and handling procedures.

About These Modules
The author team for the training modules in the landscape and horticultural tailgate training series includes Dee Jepsen, Program Director, Agricultural Safety and Health, Ohio State University Extension; Michael Wonacott, Research Specialist, Vocational Education; Peter Ling, Greenhouse Specialist; and Thomas Bean, Agricultural Safety Specialist. Modules were developed with funding from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, Grant Number 46E3-HT09.

Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or the U.S. Department of Labor.

Answer Key

1. F

2. F

3. F

4. T

5. T


Quiz: Struck-By Incidents



True or False?

1. It is acceptable to remove machine guards if they are in the way.     T     F

2. Objects leaning against walls, racks, posts, or equipment pose no potential hazards.     T     F

3. Tree trimming is not a source of struck-by incidents.     T     F

4. Do not leave tools or loose parts on window ledges or other working areas.     T     F

5. Equipment falling object protective structures (FOPS) help reduce hazards.     T     F

Originally posted Jun 8, 2018.