We spend most of our days talking to trailer drivers. They know a thing or two about driver fatigue. They’ll also tell you that one trailer load, compared to two or three trailers, will all display different characteristics.
They will behave differently in the way they sway back and forwards or from left to right. Drivers say that sometimes the two trailers will behave and maybe the third trailer’s characteristics are completely different. In addition, the features of the load come into play. If it’s a liquid load, you will have that rolling around; with a waste load, you don’t know what you’ve got. It could have been loaded top-heavy, which means taking a corner carefully, so that you are holding onto the road.Atlas Balance Rings for steers and drives.
Then, physical characteristics of the road make for further challenges. In Far North Queensland, some highways have been worn by road trains. Drivers say it’s a bit like going on a roller coaster. Where you’d usually drive at 100kph, a smaller truck or single trailer driver may need to reduce the speed to 80 or 90 kph so they don’t hit the hard bumps. The small vehicles experience wear and tear in the shocks, steering components and tyres.
Then there is the windsail effect. We’ve been told drivers along the Great Australian Bight with two or three trailers, may not even see the last trailer in the left hand mirror, with the wind pushing it across the road. With this sort of work, the trailer tyres will wear and tear in a certain direction. Often with city work; braking, reversing and short sharp turns; the steer tyres may wear more.
Singing with the choir: 46 wheels working together
Dan Murphy of Dekecat, drives through Central Queensland; Moranbah, Glendon, Dingo (the birthplace of Broncos halfback Ben Hunt) and Emerald. “The worst is the Beef Road between Dingo and Peak Downs, you’ve got to be on your game there,” he said. “At night you can see the trailer lights all out of line behind you. This Kenworth T610SAR tracks a lot better. I put it down to the Atlas Balance Rings and Hendrickson Air Max Suspension. Seriously you’ve just spent a million dollars on your rig, what’s a few thousand dollars to keep all 46 wheels working together? Like my dad Marty, I always wanted to be a truck driver, except for the week I was going to be a fire truck operator, and that’s going on for nine years now.
“The reason we fitted the Atlas Balance Rings from new was because of the rising price of tyres and fuel. We wanted the truck running as efficiently as possible with less wear and tear.
By having 46 wheels working together rather than fighting each other – whether full or empty – it means the engine doesn’t work as hard, and neither does your wallet.
Remember, Australian made, Australian owned. It’s Atlas, it’s Balanced! Call 1300 2ATLAS (1300 228 527) Australia and New Zealand.
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