Safety during tyre inflation
Inflated tyres contain a large amount of stored energy, which varies according to the inflation pressure and the surface area of the tyre (e.g. the sidewall of a typical commercial vehicle tyre has to withstand over 34 tonnes of force from compressed air before additional carriage weight is taken into account).
If the tyre fails, an explosive force can be released at an angle of up to 45 degrees from the rupture (which is often, but not always, the face of the sidewall). This has resulted in numerous fatalities over the years.
It is crucial that the airline hose between the clip-on chuck and the pressure gauge/control is long enough to allow the operator to stand outside the likely trajectory of any explosion during inflation so that inflation of tyres can be carried out from a position of safety. This will vary depending on the size of the tyre and its positioning. Where necessary a suitable tyre cage is required and the sidewall of the tyre should be inspected prior to inflation to
The HSA and HSENI have prepared this Information Note itemising the Do's and Don'ts of Tyre Inflation and best practice
LC Tyres have produced this comprehensive guidance document with flowcharts explaining the modes and causes of tyre failure and the actions to take