Archive for August, 2010

Brake Testing Essential Part of Fleet Management

August 19th, 2010 No comments

Brake Testing should form part of vehicle maintenance routine, however VOSA are reporting that Van fleets are ignoring the need for regular maintenance checks and disregarding mechanical failures. They claim that this is a greater problem with vans than with heavy goods or PSV operators.

Over 50% of the 21,000 roadside checks VOSA conducted on vans throughout 2009 uncovered mechanical defects, compared to 24% of HGVs and 15% of PSVs. The most common issue was faulty brakes.

In addition, almost half (45%) of vans fail their MoT compared to 34% of HGVs and 24% of PSVs.

Graham Owen, VOSA area manager says fleets would be held criminally responsible for unroadworthy vehicles or drivers as VOSA has the authority and responsibility to remove them from the road. He insists that vans should follow the same good practice as HGVs, as laid out in the ‘O’ licence on preventative maintenance. In particular making it the driver’s responsibility to do a daily walk-round of the vehicle to ensure it is in a roadworthy condition, and keeping records to demonstrate this

Don’t rely on the MoT – it’s the worst standard you can apply,” Owen warned. “It is the minimum standard of a vehicle that has ticked the boxes at a moment in time. You want your standard to be higher so that over the period between inspection – whether that’s 12 weeks, six months or a year – you never fall below the compliance line.”

These checks could include regular brake testing with products such as Brake Check.

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BrakeCheck. Make brake Testing part of your routine vehicle checks

BrakeCheck. Make brake Testing part of your routine vehicle checks

AdBlue Contamination Check on Inspection

August 8th, 2010 No comments
The European Unions recent emphasis on reducing vehicle emissions has led to them introducing new regulations regarding emissions from light and heavy goods vehicles. SCR  is a method introduced by leading vehicle manufacturers to comply with these new rules. SCR is a process that reduces NOx emissions using a urea additive in the exhaust flow.

AdBlue is an example of such an additive. The liquid is mixed with the exhaust fumes as they leave the engine. A great method of reducing emissions however a business needs to be sure that this process is working effectively all the time to ensure compliance with the European Union rules.

An Optical Refractometer is the solution. It measures the refraction of a liquid, in other words it ensures the right level of AdBlue is being used and checks the contamination with other liquids such as brake fluid or antifreeze!! The Optical Refractometer is an easy hand held device that is portable and easy to use

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Brake Testing avoids serious convictions

August 5th, 2010 No comments

The easiest way to prevent any prohibitions from VOSA however serious is to consider regular Brake Testing and Tyre Pressure Monitoring. By using a Brake Tester like BrakeCheck you can demonstrate that you’ve been testing on a regular basis. Similarly a Tyre Pressure Monitor such as PressurePro allows you to check you have the correct tyre pressure for your vehicle.

One Staffordshire firm recently discovered the consequences of not regularly maintaining their vehicles. Stoke-on-Trent firm, Dime Metal Services had its licence revoked from 7 August, and its boss disqualified from applying for a new licence for 15 months.

The operator has had its O-licence revoked after a Deputy Traffic Commissioner (DTC) described their vehicles as a “significant danger to other road users” due to lack of maintenance and regular testing of brakes and tyres. West Midlands Deputy Traffic Commissioner Roger Seymour said the company had shown an “almost total disregard of the law and obligations of operator licensing”.

VOSA inspectors carried out maintenance investigations into the company and identified eight prohibitions – three of which were S-marked – were imposed on the firm. They are related to “very serious” brake and tyre issues.

The DTC summarised “Looking at the evidence overall, I find that this operator has failed to discharge his responsibilities and undertakings to maintain his vehicles in a roadworthy condition to the point where the continued use of his vehicles constituted a significant danger to other road users.”

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Brake Tester

Brake Tester

Tyre Pressure Monitoring essential safety check for Motorcycles

August 4th, 2010 No comments
Tyre Pressure Monitoring has been highlighted this week throughout National Motorcycle Week  TyreSafe has been warning riders that continuous upright riding on fast straight routes can harm their bikes’ tyres. Long journeys on motorways can cause the meeting of the tyre’s sidewall and tread to ‘square-off’, which gives a feeling of loss of grip when the bike is used on winding roads, according to the safety association. Often on long journeys motorcyclists switch from the motorway to fast A- and B-roads, without knowing their bikes’ handling may be compromised.
Using a tyre pressure monitor like PressurePro takes the guesswork out of determining the correct tyre pressure and consequently improves the safety of a motorcyle.
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PressurePro. Removes the guesswork of determining the correct tyre pressure of your vehicles

PressurePro. Removes the guesswork of determining the correct tyre pressure of your vehicles