Wheel nuts, that is. While checks are part and parcel of the driver’s life, the wheel nuts can easily be overlooked – but shouldn’t be.
A reminder of how important this is comes from Mike Ponsonby. He recounts a tale from July 2010, when, stopped at the traffic lights on the slip road off the M5 Junction 1 for West Bromwich, he looked to his right and saw 8×4 truck with wheel nuts so loose his near-side right wheel was close to coming off. “There were four wheel nuts missing and another six so loose I could turn them with my fingers,” he says.
The picture that Mike took at the time shows just how bad the situation was.
Mike finally managed to stop the driver in Rolfe Street, Smethwick, a couple of miles down the road. When Mike told the driver about the state of his wheel nuts, he expressed his surprise.
“Minutes earlier, this truck was cruising at 56mph on M5 South, with the driver oblivious to this potentially fatal incident waiting for a place to happen,” Mike warns. “This should serve as a reminder for all truck drivers to continuously check your wheel nuts, especially those on the nearside wheels.
“Safety is a very good example of how nobody can do everything, but everyone can do something. So let’s drive up safety standards, as worker safety is much too important to leave to chance.”
Picture courtesy of Mike Ponsonby