Brake Testing on Quarry / Construction Equipment

The Health and Safety Executive issued the following guidance for the daily measurement of brake efficiency / capability on plant vehicle on a regular basis…

Brake testing should be carried out on level ground. The area may be marked out with poles to give a daily check. These should be backed up with regular tests using electronic testing equipment. Many of the service companies offer this as an additional package to maintenance of mobile plant. This brake testing area is set out using poles to determine that the brakes are reasonable every day. The park brake should also be checked on a ramp which is steeper than the steepest road in the quarry. An additional point to note os that when checking the park brake it should always be done at the bottom of any ramp.

Electronic brake testing equipment is available from at least two manufacturers which can be used regularly to accurately measure brake performance. This has the advantage of showing up deficiencies in the brake system before they become a problem. An electronic system may be permanently fitted to a dump truck. Other handheld systems are available…

The gradient of the road is very important to the braking capabilities of the equipment using it. Under no circumstances should roads be designed at more than a 10% slope. This is not the same as 10 degrees!

Regular maintenance of vehicles is essential, and since the introduction of EPIC brake testing guidance the number of incidents due to poor brake performance has decreased, however having an on-site mechanism for checking and recording of data is recommended.

The solution to this problem is the electronic decelerometer device which is a handheld device complete with thermal printer for record retention. The device is used to measure the deceleration forces during a braking cycle in order to calculate braking efficiency. More information and a link to buy such a machine can be found HERE.

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