Wheel Sentry” – Combined Wheel Nut Indicator and Retainer System Trial on 7.5t Royal Mail Fleet:
To: All Branches
Following 6 incidents of Road Wheel detachments on 7.5t Royal Mail vehicles in 2016, Royal Mail Fleet have been looking at various solutions to help protect the fleet against wheel loss on the road. Please see attached information on the ‘Wheel Sentry’ product which Royal Mail Fleet want to trial on the 7.5t vehicles based at Nottingham MC. Fortunately none of the 6 incidents led to a major catastrophic road accident but it could of course have been very different.
Proper wheel care is needed to prevent accidents, damage, injuries and fatalities as a result of wheel loss, as well as Police prosecutions and VOSA prohibitions, vehicle downtime and costly repairs. Loose wheel nut indicators are small pointed tags, usually made of fluorescent orange, yellow or green plastic, which are fixed to the lug nuts of the wheels of large vehicles. The tag rotates with the nut, and if the nut becomes loose, the point of the tag shifts noticeably out of alignment with the other tags. If too many lug nuts are loosened, the wheel can detach from the wheel stud. Loose wheel nut indicators allow identification of loose nuts before this can occur. Although not compulsory most road safety organisations and bodies recommend their use especially on large or heavy goods vehicles, buses coaches, large vans, trucks etc. They are used extensively by the transport industry as an enhancement and development of fleet safety and roadworthiness procedures, daily walk-round inspection and defect reporting and scheduled maintenance requirements. Its use allows accurate monitoring for loose wheel nuts and helps prevent wheel hub damage or the loss of a road wheel should a wheel nut loosen. The current Royal Mail policy is that all vehicles exceeding 3.5t GVW and all trailers must have a full set of Yellow Wheel Nut Indicators fitted.
The “Wheel Sentry” product goes a step further than standard wheel nut indicators or wheel nut locking clips as it’s a itwo-in-one solution which both indicates and retains loosened wheel nuts. It is a combined Wheel Nut Indicator and Wheel Nut Retainer which provides prompt indication of any potential wheel detachment problems and makes wheel checks easy. It retains the wheel nuts in place on the studs, should they become loose, until the nuts can be re-torqued (tightened) and the clamping force restored.
This innovative product consists of bright green combined wheel nut covers and indicators, when fitted to the wheel nuts of a HGVs, LGVs or trailers which are then linked together with a Viton band that allows wheel nuts to loosen slightly, but then holds them in place at a lower torque level until the nuts are tightened. On a driver’s daily check the new position of the Wheel Sentry on a loosened wheel nut is clearly visible and ensures it receives prompt attention.
Royal Mail Fleet are of the view that this unique wheel nut indicator and retaining system will both complement and enhance existing procedures, to ensure the safe and efficient supply of goods and services with 100% confidence and zero wheel loss. The ‘Wheel Sentry’ manufacturers offer extensive operational back up and carefully monitored stock levels to ensure ease of ordering and continuity of supply.
The product will now be trialled on a fleet of ten 7.5t vehicles operating out of Nottingham Mail Centre and the Health, Safety and Environment Department has held meetings with the manufacturers and Royal Mail Fleet Engineers and has visited Nottingham to speak to Drivers, Workshop Fleet Maintenance staff and local CWU Reps who are all supportive of the trial.
The ten 7.5t Nottingham vehicles fitted with the Wheel Sentry Components are listed as follows:-
There will be an initial three months review on site and further reports to Branches and Area Safety Reps in due course.
Wheel Sentry Leaflet ‘How It Works’ 5 Step Instructions.
Wheel Sentry Leaflet ‘What You Can Put In Place To Remove The Risk Of Wheel Detachment.’
Further reports will be made on Trial completion.
National Health, Safety & Environment Officer
Email Attachments – Click to download
Attachment 1 – LTB101/17 “Wheel Sentry” – Combined Wheel Nut Indicator and Retainer System Trial on 7.5t Royal Mail Fleet