Tyre Monitoring Systems recommended to mitigate rising Bus and Coach Fires

Published Wednesday 17 Aug, 2016 by Peter Woodford

Monitoring correct Tyre & Wheel Pressures / Temperatures to avoid Bus Fires is Critical!

According to the BIC (Bus Industry Confederation)- Fire Advisory Report 2014- "Fire mitigation on Buses" is seen as a key safety issue for bus operators and drivers, bus suppliers and manufacturers, bus passengers and government agencies at all levels. Currently every week in Australia at least one bus experiences a potentially fatal fire incident. The potential for a fatal bus fire in Australia does exist, especially for buses operating in high density urban environments or in traffic tunnels".

The report states that "Intermediate and Advanced Fire Mitigation Measures- Recommendation 7: "A system to monitor rear tyre pressures for high speed bus operations and to advise the driver if a tyre failure has occurred".

The report also states that the number of Bus Fire Claims in Australia have increased significantly, with 72 claims in 2012 alone.

OTSI (Office of Transport Safety Investigations has recently released their investigative report into Bus Fires in NSW 2015 and  40% of Bus Fires were confined to the Wheel Well.

NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration- USA) Motorcoach Fire Safety Report- Nov 2015- cited that the "causes for wheel fires are primarily dragging brakes, failed bearings, underinflated tyres". They also recommend the implementation of (TMS) Tyre Pressure (& Temperature) Monitoring Technology to mitigate tyre / wheel fires.

Many other Industries are also calling to mandate TMSystems so as to mitigate tyre related incidents / fatalities such as in Mining, On and Off Road Transport, Heavy Haulage, Mobile Cranes. etc- all with common and large percentile of tyre / wheel related issues (under - inflation, failed bearings, locked brakes, rubbing dual sets, wheel offs) that are also suffered in the Public Transport. For example:

  • Truck Crash Data Analysis March 2014– NSW Centre for Road Safety report that >22% of Transport Truck crashes are related to tyres / tyre failures.
  • NTI (National Transport Insurance) Major Accident Investigation Report – 2015 report that 33% of truck fires are related to wheels and tyres.

We all know too well some of the ramifications of tyre and wheel issues - how often have you noticed shredded bits of tyre all over the road? Have you ever been behind a truck when a tyre explodes? Or as driver, had a close call with a rapidly deflating steer tyre?

There are many reported incidents resulting in fatalities from tyre / wheel related issues - for example "wheel - offs" that have careered into traffic, public areas. Tyre explosions have also claimed lives- especially when they have caught on fire.

TMSystem technology has proven to aid with mitigating these incidents by providing the driver with an easy and safe way to alert to tyre pressure and - temperatures and so receiving advanced warning of a developing problem.

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