Chocking, also known as blocking, is a procedure in which chocks — wedges made of dense material — are placed against a truck or trailer’s tires to prevent accidental movement. The bottom of the chock may be coated or textured to grip the ground better.
During loading and unloading, wheel chocks prevent a truck and trailer from rolling or moving unintentionally. Without the protection of chocks, the vehicle could move and cause severe injury or death. It is crucial to chock your wheels at loading docks to prevent a dangerous gap between your trailer and the dock from developing, an area which a forklift may have to drive over many times.
Proper Chocking Methods
Be prepared to chock your truck or trailer when necessary, which means keeping a set of chocks with you at all times. If a dock does not have them readily available, you won’t have to wait to unload. When selecting chocks, the size of your truck or trailer matters to ensure safety. Use only chocks or blocks that are designed for your type of vehicle as incorrectly sized chocks could allow a vehicle to slip free.
When arriving at a loading dock, set your brakes, including the emergency brake, and make sure that you are parked securely and as close as possible to the dock before you set the chocks. OSHA mandates that your vehicle must be chocked before being unloaded. (A detached trailer must be jacked up with the rear wheels chocked).
Wheel chocks should be used on a level surface with the chocks placed flush with the tires of the wheel that you are blocking. Place the chocks against the center of the tires. Proper chocking involves placing chocks at the left and right wheels furthest to the rear. If only the front axle of your vehicle has been chocked, a forklift could potentially loosen the chock by pushing the trailer forward or causing the wheel to skip over the block. If the surface is flat, it is best to place a chock at both the front and rear of each tire that is being chocked. When on a grade, chocks should be placed in the direction of the grade.
Never use other materials, such as lumber and other makeshift items, as substitute chocks because they can create dangerous conditions and are not intended to stop accidental movement.
At Parts Brite, we sell the wheel chocks and aftermarket loading dock parts that you need, and we can ship your order quickly from our California or Wisconsin warehouses. We are happy to answer any questions you may have about our selection of wheel chocks and mounting equipment or any of the other high-quality loading dock parts we carry. We’re here to help. Give us a call at 1-855-PARTSBRITE (1-855-727-8727) today to speak to one of our equipment specialists.