Protecting your fleet from the heat

With scorching heat waves affecting much of the country, it's not just people who need to be extra wary of letting the temperature get the better of them.

Soaring temperatures can cause myriad headaches for any fleet manager in Australia due to their ability to wreak havoc on roads and vehicles.

In light of the particularly potent heat wave that recently hit Victoria, the state's road authorities issued a reminder to motorists to take extra care on the roads at this time of the year. One issue that cropped up in the state was the roads becoming "sticky" under the withering heat and affecting vehicles.

"We are seeing this kind of damage occurring right across Victoria in regional areas as well as metropolitan," VicRoads Director of Road Operations Dean Zabrieszach said in a January 17 statement.

"In certain circumstances, temporary speed limit signs may be installed for safety purposes, and we are asking drivers to slow down and take care driving over the surface."

He also added that the heat could affect cars directly and was likely to contribute to a spike in vehicle breakdowns.

"We all need a little extra care and hydration during a prolonged hot-spell like this and that goes for your car as well.  Make sure you check your water, oil, tyres and petrol," said Mr Zabrieszach.
Even small things such as parking on long, dry grass had the potential to be a fire hazard, he said.

As temperatures can rise to often unbearable heights in this country, fleet managers must make sure the heat doesn't cause a strain on one of their organisation's most vital assets. Stringent fleet maintenance is essential as the heat waves continue, and a fleet management program can prove to be of vital help.

The best fleet management programs nowadays keep fleet managers and staff covered from all angles, from maintenance schedules to roadside assistance.