Heavy Duty Trucking

NOV 2014

The Fleet Business Authority

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94 HDT • NOVEMBER 2014 www.truckinginfo.com a trucking f leet is excessive, and really isn't worth the effort." Ryder Systems is one f leet that successfully micro-manages tires. They have to; it's their bread and butter. Scott Perry, vice president of Supply Management and Fleet tion that makes its money on the spread between what they charge a customer for a full-service lease program and what it costs them to keep the truck on the road," he says. "Frankly, there are many instances where that level of management in Jim Park • Equipment Editor H ow you manage your tire program isn't as important as what you get out of the management exercise. Really sophisticated management tools and practices will produce tons of information. How valuable that data is to the operation is very much the question. You've heard the expression, drinking from a fire hose; that's what happens when you micro-manage a tire program. You need to be able to separate the useful data from the noise lest you become overwhelmed and frustrated with the process. There's another expression you've probably heard: keep it simple, stupid. That's probably where most small fleets should be in tire management. You have to make sure you are not spending more time and energy track- ing your tires than the return you see from the process. "The only group that I know of that really tracks tires well are the leasing companies; they track tires by vehicle, because that's how they make their money," notes Darry Stuart, president of DWS Fleet Management Service, and a self-described rebel when it comes to some maintenance practices — tires being one of them. Stuart notes that big leasing com- panies can tell you to the 32nd of an inch when a Bridgestone steer tire or a Michelin drive tire will come due for replacement. They can tell you to the fraction of cent what a tire's lifetime cost will be with two or three retreads run at two or three different wheel positions. "That's great for an opera- What to track in a tire program to make sure you're getting the most out of every day they spend on the road. Tires&Wheels By the inch or by the mile Putting a new tire onto a truck that prematurely killed the previous tire is con- signing the new tire to an early grave. You have to know what killed the first tire to prevent it from happening again.

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