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Three-points of contact rule

You may already know the three-points of contact rule can keep you safe when working with ladders but you may not
have thought about other areas it could apply. Workers are often injured while climbing in and out of vehicles and on
and off heavy equipment.

The three-points of contact rule:
The three-points of contact rule states that when climbing, three of your four limbs should be in contact with the
vehicle or equipment at all times. This means that two hands and one foot or two feet and one hand should always
be in contact when climbing in or out of a vehicle or on equipment. Incorporating the three-points of contact rule can
significantly reduce your risk of slipping or falling as it provides maximum stability and support.

When working with vehicles and heavy equipment:
• Wear proper shoes with good support
• Exit and enter the vehicle while facing the cab
• Slow down and use extra caution in bad weather
• Get a firm grip with your hands on the vehicle’s equipment rails or handles
• Look for obstacles on the ground before exiting the vehicle
• Use the three-point rule

You shouldn’t:
• Climb down or out of a vehicle with an object in your free hand. Set it on the vehicle floor and
retrieve it when you’re on the ground
• Rush to climb out of the vehicle after driving for a extended period of time to avoid straining a muscle
• Jump out of the vehicle or off the equipment. You may land off-balance or on an uneven
• Use tires or wheel hubs as a step surface when getting in or out of a vehicle
• Use the door frame or door edge as a handhold or hoist

Additional accident prevention and safety resources can be found at: www.OSHA.gov


This article is provided solely as a reference tool to be used for information purposes only. The information in this article shall not be construed or interpreted as providing legal or any other advice. The information material does not amend the provisions of any insurance policy issued by CompSource Mutual. It is not a representation that coverage does or does not exist for any particular claim or loss under any such policy. Coverage depends on the facts and circumstances involved in the claim or loss, all applicable policy provisions, and any applicable law.

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