32 Percent of Truck Fires Caused By Brakes

In a recent article by Tire Business, it was reported that trailer fires are the most common and are caused by brakes (32% of the time), wheel bearings (32%), air leaks (24%) or tires (12%). It was also revealed that the incidents of fire have increased since many fleets started to use skirts that direct air around the wheels and brakes.

-The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) conducted tests and found that wheel-end components heated by frozen bearings can reach temperatures of 1,300 F.

-At 300 degrees Fahrenheit, the tire comes apart and blows out; at 500 F to 550 F, flammable vapors are generated; and at 650 F to 700 F, the tire will burn when provided with an ignition source.

-One of the most common mistakes leading to a trailer fire was packing hubs with too much grease.

Fisher: Many trailer, truck fires can be prevented

Have you heard this one? A trucker pulls into a truck stop parking lot, and when he stopped his tractor-trailer rig, the tires on the right side of his trailer burst into flames. He pulled out his cellphone, called the fire department and shouted, “Hurry over here. My truck is on fire!”

“OK,” replied the fireman. “How do we get there?”

To which the trucker replied: “Say, don’t you still have those big red trucks?”

While this story is funny, actually having a tire fire on a school bus, motorcoach, truck, tractor or trailer is not. Every year millions of dollars of cargo and equipment are burned to a crisp as are people if they can’t get out of the bus fast enough…