The UAE summer heat poses a challenge to truck tyres and truck drivers. Truck tyre debris is a common sight on UAE roads. This means danger to the trucks themselves, but also to oncoming traffic. Truck drivers are exposed to high temperatures posing often difficult working conditions.
To check tyre safety in Abu Dhabi and to show appreciation to truck drivers, Integrated Transport Centre in Abu Dhabi, Al Masaood, Bridgestone and RoadSafety UAE teamed up for a multi-party initiative. The main goal of this initiative is to improve the awareness about tyres among truck drivers through conducting a visual check of truck tyres condition and an interactive awareness campaign. This event is the first in a series of such events to be held by the campaign partners in the coming quarters.
At Abu Dhabi’s Mussafah truck weighing station the initial activation yielded a total of 276 truck tyres checked, with 2% showing dangerous levels of under-inflation and 7% of over-inflation. Even more dangerous, 6% of tyres were damaged and 8% of tyre valves were not even accessible. Tyre rotation (from front to back and left to right) can play an important role in extending the lifetime of a tyre and 42% of tyres need this kind of re-mounting. Valves are vital to keeping tyres pressurised and valve caps are crucial to prevent valves to malfunction, hence the surveyed 43% of missing valve caps are unsatisfactory.
In addition to the tyre checks, 75 truck drivers have been given tire safety awareness sessions about the importance of properly inflated tyres, the connection of tyre pressure to load, speed, increased outside temperature and the resulting inside tyre temperature, what kind of precaution drivers have to take to avoid the tyre blast and much more. Sumaya Saeed Al Neyadi, Section Head of Road Safety in ITC Abu Dhabi explains: "ITC is committed to improving road safety in line with the vision of the authorities of Abu Dhabi and of UAE Federal level, and this initiative of truck safety is a particular interest to ITC and the society of the UAE. We believe in the contribution of public-private partnerships in achieving the objective of Vision Zero Strategy aiming to eliminate the fatalities on Abu Dhabi’s roads, and we are looking forward to upcoming such joint effort in the near future."
Salah Adib, General Manager, Al Masaood Tyres, Batteries and Accessories Division, states: “Al Masaood is a leading player in Abu Dhabi’s automotive sector, and we have taken this initiative as a logical extension of our business to help address some of the day-to-day road safety challenges that drivers in the Emirate face. The quality and use of a tyre play a significant role in fuel consumption and truck emissions due to its rolling resistance. The effectiveness and road handling of tyres, and therefore their safety, performance, ride comfort, and stability on loose or wet roads is influenced not only by their age and wear and tear but also by inflation pressure. With the correct inflation pressure, tyres will work better, wear less and improve vehicle fuel consumption as a result of lower rolling resistance.”
Stefano Sanchini, Regional Managing Director, Bridgestone Middle East and Africa: "Proactive tire maintenance is crucial, in order to help fleet owners maximize uptime. Wheels and components of commercial motor vehicles are essential for braking systems, as well as supporting the heavy loads by maintaining stability and control. Routine inspections help enhance safety, while also improving profitability, especially with off-the-road tires and rims/wheels, which require maintenance by operators before every shift. We believe this collaborative effort will aid the industry in educating technicians and drivers about the requirements for truck tire inspections set forth by the authorities. Bridgestone is committed to ensuring the transportation sector's safety, as well as delivering superior mechanical and operational excellence. In keeping with this vision, we continue to encourage fleet owners, operators, and other industry personnel to promote safety in our sector."
Thomas Edelmann, Founder & Managing Director of RoadSafetyUAE adds: “Truck, truck tyres and truck drivers’ safety are obviously key components of UAE’s road safety. Hence, we are delighted with the commitment of ITC, Al Masaood and Bridgestone to kick-start a long-lasting campaign series with this inaugural event. It is vital to control truck tyres on a regular basis, to educate truck drivers and to show them our appreciation for their hard work.”