TyreWatch has recently expanded its tyre management platform with AutoAlign, continuously monitoring for wheel misalignment, an issue it estimates affects a third of UK commercial vehicles, and VanSmart, a specific system for light commercial vehicles. With the new systems, TyreWatch has expanded its service offering further around the transport industry as it strives to balance commercial considerations with safety, compliance and ecological green initiatives. It says they enable fleet managers across all commercial sectors to reduce running costs and increase safety while limiting the environmental impact of their operation.
The tyre industry and UK government have produced a best practice guide for van operators and drivers. The guide, available on the British Tyre Manufacturers’ Association website, has been produced to help improve roadworthiness and reduce the risk of tyre-related incident. It is in part a response to the latest data from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA), which shows defective tyres remain consistently the primary reason for roadside prohibitions. They account for between 15 and 22 per cent of these potentially instantaneous bans of the vehicle’s use. Other categories of prohibitions, such as Lamps and Reflectors account on average no more than 7 per cent or 8 per cent, with the majority averaging 4 per cent.
Bridgestone is to acquire the Otraco OTR tyre management solutions business from Downer EDI, continuing its growth strategy. The acquisition will be made by the number one tyre manufacturer’s group company, Bridgestone Mining Solutions Australia Pty. Ltd. Bridgestone said the acquisition will accelerate the growth of its global mining solutions business and expand the company’s service network in key markets such as Australia, Chile and South Africa. Bridgestone wants to complete the transaction, valued at 79 million Australian dollars (approximately £44 million), by the end of 2021.
On 13 March Dana Incorporated released version 3.0 of its Rhombus TireAnalytics system, in the USA. According to company, the latest version comes with new capabilities to help large fleets reduce tyre costs. The third generation of the technology provides new cost-per-mile (CPM) analysis capabilities and best practice solutions that enable commercial-truck owners and fleet maintenance managers to make better data driven decisions for each application.
Vacu-Lug has become the new retread manufacturing partner for Hankook in the UK. The company signalled its new status by including the manufacturer’s Alphatread retreading brand on its stand at the Commercial Vehicle Show (24-26 April, Birmingham NEC), coinciding with the beginning of production of the Alphatread bead-to-bead retread truck tyre range at the Vacu-Lug factory in Grantham.
Leading tanker and environmental waste firm Biomarsh Environmental Ltd has signed a comprehensive tyre management contract with Vacu-Lug Traction Tyres. The deal is designed to provide nationwide support and aid compliance throughout the Biomarsh fleet.
ATS Euromaster has won a new national contract to supply, fit and manage tyres for Kier Services. The new contract replaces a previous agreement with local independent tyre dealers and will see ATS Euromaster support Kier Services’ 214-strong fleet, which ranges from 3.5-tonne light commercials to 32-tonne refuse collection vehicles (RCVs). ATS-E’s proactive MasterCARE fleet inspections, which aim to increase tyre durability and performance, and help to minimise tyre-related downtime, was a key factor in the new contract.
Specialist broadcast solutions company Cloudbass has signed a new deal with ATS Euromaster to maximise its vehicle uptime. Sky, BBC and ITV turn to Cloudbass to assist in the production of high profile live sports programming, including Scottish Premier League football and the British Touring Car Championship. For this reason, Cloudbass required a support partner that could keep its commercial vehicle fleet on the road and minimise tyre-related downtime.
National waste water management and high-pressure water jetting services specialist Industrial Water Jetting Systems (IWJS) has appointed Vacu-Lug Traction Tyres to provide a comprehensive tyre management and husbandry service for its UK vehicle fleet.
Rotterdam based ship components supplier Estron Transport’s modern fleet of 280 tautliner trailers are fitted with Goodyear Kmax T trailer tyres in size 385/65R22.5 and 10 tractor units. The firm operates a daily service between Benelux, the UK and Germany, primarily the just-in-time delivery of parts for ships, and as befits such an organisation it is at the forefront of the use of logistics technology; Goodyear, which has supplied the company for more than 15 years, including its FleetOnlineSolutions (FOS) tyre management system since 2006, states efficient tyre management is an essential part of Estron’s real-time planning process, supported by a track and trace system, ensuring minimum downtime for vehicles and reduced administration.
Sigmavision is to promote its TreadReader technology to the commercial sector when it exhibits at The Commercial Vehicle Show (Stand 4F65, Birmingham NEC, 25-27 April). The company states that TreadReader “addresses the shortcomings of traditional dip gauges and other spot-measurement or laser-line devices currently available.” Each product in the range, which includes mobile and fixed workshop options, creates a 3D scanned image showing a 50mm band across the full width of the tyre. Sigmavision adds that its scans are reliable and accurate even on wet and dirty tyres.
McGill’s Buses has signed a five-year extension to its Michelin solutions tyre management programme. The fleet operator said Michelin solutions’ “fantastic support” was a key factor in its decision to renew. The Effitires contract covers the operator’s 400-plus single and double-decker buses, and will see Michelin solutions supply, fit and service the operator’s Michelin tyres.
Vacu-Lug has upgraded its VMS management system, adding a self-authorisation function to allow customers to validate and authorise work carried out on their vehicles from their own computer. Customers using the added function are also able to accept or reject their own pending authorisations and query transactions if necessary. Vacu-Lug states that VMS provides complete transparency and takes away the hassle of having to deal with suppliers directly.
Experience with truck fleets in Germany has shown Continental that while both fleet owners and drivers appreciate the value of tyre pressure monitoring systems, more than two-thirds of all fleets don’t yet realise the full potential that digitalisation offers. The tyre maker and automotive systems provider aims to change this, and has introduced a digital product that extends the benefits delivered by ContiPressureCheck, the TPMS first introduced by Continental in 2013 and now offered in 27 markets around the world.