Enviro300 issues raised at PI
Issues with suspension components on ADL Enviro300s have been raised during a Public Inquiry.
First Glasgow was issued with a formal warning from the Traffic Commissioner after an accident on the Clydeside Expressway, in which the vehicle was found to have two broken rear spring anchor bolts. They were found not to have contributed to the accident but in a broader fleet investigation, it was found there were wider issues with the bolts on Enviro300s.
Traffic Commissioner, Kevin Rooney, found that the inspection regime needed to be stepped up, and said: “ADL is put on notice of the operating environment likely to be encountered by these vehicles in later life.” In his written report of the PI, the Traffic Commissioner also said: “All operators of ADL Enviro300 vehicles are put on notice of the likelihood of rear spring bolt failures and called upon to review maintenance arrangements.”
A DVSA investigation was carried out following a traffic accident resulting in passenger injuries on 28 April last year. DVSA’s inspection of the vehicle found both near side and offside rear anchor spring bolts to be damaged. A check of the vehicle maintenance records found that the vehicle had six rear spring anchor bolts fitted during the previous six months.
A fleet check was then carried out on 23 May 2018. Inspections were focused on the suspension components of ADL Enviro300 vehicles. Seven of the 60 vehicles that were inspected had immediate prohibition notices issued for broken rear spring anchor bolts. Checks of the records showed that five of the seven prohibited vehicles had broken rear spring anchor bolts recorded on the previous inspection reports.
In response to the DVSA findings, the company started an internal investigation. Discussions continued between the operator and ADL. The operator tightened inspection frequency for ADL Enviro300 suspension components initially to fortnightly and then later to weekly. Expert advice from engineering consultants Burgoynes was sought. The company continues to work closely with Burgoynes, DVSA, ADL and Police Scotland.
Kevin Rooney said: “This issue with the ADL Enviro300 is now public knowledge. Whether or not the vehicles are ultimately recalled, all operators of these vehicles must review their maintenance arrangements to ensure that no catastrophic failure is allowed to happen. In that regard, I note that First Glasgow inspect the rear suspension weekly, a second operator I have encountered with the vehicles inspects them between weekly and fortnightly depending on the use to which they are put.”
An ADL spokesperson responded to the report with: “Safety is of paramount importance to us at Alexander Dennis. At this stage, we cannot comment further while an investigation by the DVSA is underway. We are supporting them fully in this.”
Though finding First Glasgow’s maintenance regime to be exemplary in all other respects, Kevin Rooney, issued First Glasgow with a formal warning of the need constantly to monitor maintenance arrangements and tighten them where evidence indicates concerns. He outlined a second need to ensure that sophisticated management systems do not remove the ability for direct communication. A review of transport management arrangements at the First operations have been conducted.
- No regulatory action was taken against the licence, nor were there any adverse findings in relation to any transport manager.
A full copy of the Traffic Commissioner’s report on the First Glasgow PI, including technical details is available on available at: https://goo.gl/TUPtAk