Changing tyres on a specialist heavy haulage trailer is no easy task. That’s why Stuart Keast, Superintendent Fleet Delivery at Rio Tinto Iron Ore approached Drake Trailers and Tom Price Cranage & Transport to see if there might be a better way.
The result of this collaborative innovation is the Hydraulic tyre caddie – 8656 which was nominated for the 2012 Rio Tinto Improvement Award in the ‘Not Invented Here Award for replication in safety’ category.
Two Rio Tinto trailers fitted with hydraulic tyre caddies
Already fitted to two of Rio’s heavy haulage trailers, the hydraulic caddie completely removes to the need to climb onto the gooseneck and manoeuvre tyres to the ground. Instead, the caddie does all the work, lowering the spares to the ground and making them easy to simply roll off.
Putting spares back is a whole lot easier too; operators simply roll the tyres into the saddle and use the hydraulic system to position them back above the gooseneck.
Drake Trailers innovation reduces risk
The hydraulic tyre caddie has turned a process that normally carries a high risk rating into a low risk task. By removing the need for the operator to climb onto the gooseneck and man-handle the tyres, the risks of working at heights, being in the line of fire and strain injury are eliminated.
Originating from the concept of a tyre crane, the hydraulic tyre caddie design has a fully articulated folding arm that brings the spares safely to the ground and folds away neatly when stowed.
The Rio Tinto Improvement Awards are designed to showcase and reward Rio Tinto Australia employees for adopting or adapting great ideas from across the Rio Tinto operations.
Rio Tinto’s hydraulic tyre caddie is just one example of the engineering innovation and custom trailer design services Drake Trailers are famous for.
As Australia’s leading trailer company, Drake Trailers designs and manufactures innovative, robust modular heavy haulage trailers and low loaders capable of carrying up to 1,000 tonnes.
For trailers that are designed to work hard for years and still maintain a great re-sale value, contact Drake Trailers.
The Drake Group includes Drake Trailers, O’Phee Trailers and Drake Collectibles. Continuing innovation, superior Australian materials, cutting-edge engineering and outstanding build quality are the fundamentals of the Drake Group.