The road transport industry is being urged to invest more in tyre technician training to boost road safety.
Continental Tyres says there are more commercial vans and vehicles on the UK’s roads than ever before – mainly down to the boom in home deliveries that have taken place during the Covid-19 pandemic.
They say that while the growing demand for consumer goods is excellent news for logistics fleets, trucking firms should not neglect the professionals who help support the industry.
The firm’s technical service and training manager, Gwyn Fennell, said all tyre service providers should work to ensure that their tyre technicians are properly trained.
‘Qualified technicians for managing truck health’
He said: “The logistics sector needs qualified technicians for managing truck health and keeping trucks on the road.
“Roads are dangerous and with more fleets running means the supporting fleet of servicing agents are under pressure to provide services.”
Mr Fennell added: “This means that releasing tyre technicians for their training gets pushed down the list of priorities and, understandably, service agents will need their tyre technicians on the road doing their job.”
He stresses that this need for meeting customer demand should not be at the detriment of training staff adequately – without whom service would not be delivered.
Commercial vehicle tyre technicians
Among the qualifications that commercial vehicle tyre technicians should be holding is a REACT (Roadside Emergency Action Concerning Technicians) licence so they can work safely on the roadside.
This qualification will need to be renewed by tyre technicians every five years so it remains valid.
Now, Continental Tyres has created a training programme that will fit around the specific needs of each tyre technician and their employers to deliver service and real value.
Conventional courses are being run by the ContiAcademy at their Lutterworth training facility, along with hybrid courses that are held online.
Practical training is undertaken at customer sites with all training meeting Covid-19 guidelines.
Meeting the needs of tyre technicians
The training can also be designed to be a bespoke offering for meeting the needs of tyre technicians.
Part of this process will see a pre-assessment taking place to establish the technician’s experience and their needs.
The Academy can also create courses for fleet operators whether or not they are customers of Continental Tyres.
The aim of the training is to boost tyre service life, reduce the need for premature removal, limiting damage and delivering optimal maintenance.
Mr Fennell says this technician training is beneficial for the operators of heavy-duty and light commercial vehicle fleets.
He said: “We see value in arming fleet managers with information on how tyres work to broaden their understanding and drive down operational costs so they get the best value from their fleet tyres.”