Tyre Changing and Repair
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
Tyre Explosion in a Safety Cage
This video shows the pressure released when a tyre explodes during inflation and the benefits of enclosing the tyre within a tyre cage
If a vehicle is to be raised to remove the wheel then the vehicle must be adequately supported to prevent any danger of collapse and the operation must be carried out on solid ground that will not fail resulting in collapse. Adequate lifting equipment and restraining equipment must be available to remove the wheel to be changed or removed and the wheel must never be left free standing where there is a danger of it falling and causing injury. After changing or refitting of a wheel the wheel nuts or clamping devices must be correctly installed and tensioned using appropriate tools and equipment.
Manual Handling of Tyres
In some quarries tyre replacement and repair is carried out remotely and in others it is carried out at the quarry or by a contractor carrying out the work on site. Moving and fitting tyres involves a lot of manual handling. Back and other muscular injuries are common. The cost to employers is considerable and, of course, the physical cost to workers can be painful and long-term. It is therefore important that any work involving manual handling is assessed and suitable manual handling is provided to reduce the risk of injury to workers. Manual handling injuries account for nearly a half of all tyre-related incidents reported.
Tyres and wheels which are to be taken off site for repair or disposal must be stored so that they will not endanger persons as a result of collapse. Good standards of housekeeping should be maintained
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