Fleet Safety: Backing Accidents


Roughly one out of every four accidents (25%) involves backing. Considering that the average driver operates in reverse less than a mile every year, this statistic is even more alarming. The following tips will help you avoid collisions while backing:
  • Avoid backing whenever possible. Drivers should plan ahead to reduce backing operations in the first place.
• Try to position the vehicle to a void backing.
• If backing cannot be avoided, it is better to back in upon arrival then to back out later while departing.
• Conduct a visual walk-around of the vehicle to identify potential hazards.
• Whenever available, use a passenger to guide you during backing operations.
• Always back slowly while continuously looking and listening for signs of trouble.
• Continuously check all mirrors while backing.


Following are key collision failures related to backing operations:
  • Failure to look before backing
• Failure to check blind spots
• Failure to conduct a walk-around
• Backing at an unsafe speed
• Failure to check mirrors often


All backing accidents are preventable. The key is to plan ahead to a void backing in the first place. You should only back up your vehicle as a last resort.

© 2020 CHS Inc.