The UK is pushing forward with its efforts to get autonomous, self-driving cars on the road by 2021 after publishing its Code of Practice guidelines for automated vehicle trialling.
The document covers the process of advanced trials of automated vehicles on public roads, including a number of requirements for companies that will ensure safe testing.
Along with more transparent guidelines, the UK government is supporting the development of self-driving cars by allowing vehicle trials on any UK road (providing they are compliant with UK law) as well as the chance to ditch a safety driver.
The document states that vehicles will be allowed to test on public roads using a remote driver, rather than a human behind the wheel or even in the car, providing the remote driver is able to intervene at any moment. Experts have responded to the new code of practice, particularly the news of being able to perform tests without an onboard safety driver.
“It’s encouraging to see the UK government demonstrating such ambition with regards to the future of transport,” said Chris Patton from the EMEIA Transport team at Fujitsu. “Autonomous cars have the potential to massively reduce congestion and the environmental impact of traditional vehicles, while making transport cheaper and safer. However, while there is excitement about what driverless cars will mean for the future of mobility, there is still understandably a degree of nervousness – we’re in the very early stages of the journey to driverless, not just because the technology isn’t yet fully ready but also because the public may not be.”
The UK’s Transport Research Laboratory (TRL) welcomes the DfT’s update as a positive move toward a transparent template for automated vehicle trials that will accelerate delivery and boost public acceptance of these new technologies.
“Looking to the future, this latest guidance from DfT is a welcome move toward a more transparent and open platform for connected and automated vehicle (CAV) trials here in the UK,” said Dr David Hynd, chief scientist at TRL. “With experience gained from involvement across a number of the major CAV trials in the UK, TRL is at the heart of developing robust safety cases for vehicles that are fit for an automated future.
“In welcoming the changes, we also acknowledge the need for the implementation of international safety standards that will elevate road transport to the same level of safety, scrutiny and sharing of best practice that exists within the aviation industry.”
Source: WERC Vice Chairperson Omar Ricardo Chehayeb
The University of Queensland is developing what it is calling the next-generation of sensor technology, which could offer ultra-precise navigation and communication for unmanned vehicles.
As part of a US$4.6m project, the University of Queensland (UQ) is working on an initiative to use quantum technology for the new sensors. Quantum technology focuses on building electronics componentry that is smaller and faster than is physically possible today.
The UQ is working with the Australian Defence Force, NASA and technology companies Orica Ltd and Skyborne Technologies for use in defense applications, and would open up the potential for use on autonomous vehicles.
“This is an exciting new direction, applying quantum physics to major challenges in modern technology,” said UQ scientist Professor Warwick Bowen.
“Quantum sensors allow greatly improved performance and could transform navigation and positioning capabilities for unmanned vehicles.
“These sensors will be so precise that the laws of quantum physics are required to understand how they function.
“And they’ll be built from both nano-engineered mechanical devices fabricated on a silicon chip, and atomic gases cooled until they behave as matter waves.”
Courtesy of WERC Vice Chairperson Omar Ricardo Chehayeb
There will be three major focus areas at this year’s Automechanika Johannesburg trade fair for the automotive aftermarket which takes place at Expo Centre, Nasrec, from 18-21 September.
Each of the first three days is being dedicated to a specific focus area: innovation on the Wednesday, skills development on the Thursday and ‘buy local’ on the Friday.
“We have identified three important topics to build on for the first three days of this year’s Automechanika Expo and are encouraging exhibitors as well as the organisers of conferences and workshops to link into these themes on each of these days,” says Joshua Low, Group Exhibitions Director of Messe Frankfurt South Africa.
“Each of these themes has a vital role to play in building a strong support base for the automotive aftermarket in South Africa where our local vehicle manufacturing industry is embarking on a new programme to encourage increased local content, upskilling of employees and the development of innovative products and processes.“
The first day of the event will include the Innovation Awards presentation, where innovative ideas from local and international companies will be rewarded.
Some of exhibitors this year includes Trysome Auto Electrical, Centlube, Aer-o-cure, Diessel Electric, Launch Technologies, Engen, Dixon Batteries and Turbo Direct, with the organisers targetingmore than 600 local and international exhibitors.
There will also be a host of conferences and workshops, with many organisations arranging these events to tie-in with the staging of Automechanika Johannesburg.
When an Electronic Control Unit (ECU) – also known as the ‘computer’ – of a vehicle needs to be repaired or replaced, motorists are often confronted with a hefty repair bill. This makes sense as an ECU is a very powerful control system capable of gathering hundreds of channels of information to control every aspect of your car’s engine management or other important vehicle functions such as handling characteristics, braking systems and climate control.
If you compare a car engine to a human body, the pistons might be the heart, the headlights would be the eyes, and the ECU would be the brain. The ECU controls a series of actuators to make sure things are running smoothly within the engine. Within the engine bay, there are several sensors that provide the ECU with maintenance information. The ECU then uses these sensor readings to adjust engine actuators for optimum efficiency.
“What motorists might not know is that they can contribute to the premature failure of ECUs by being unaware of the damage caused by not adhering to a couple of simple rules,” says Dewald Ranft, Chairman of the Motor Industry Workshop Association (MIWA), a proud association of the Retail Motor Industry Organisation (RMI). “Jumpstarting your car incorrectly is one of the most common ways one can damage an ECU.”
Ranft provides the following useful hints to help motorists extend the ECUs life’s expectancy:
- Be very aware of the polarity of the jumper leads when jumpstarting a vehicle with a flat battery as many an ECU has been damaged by short circuiting the jumper leads. Always connect the leads positive to positive and negative to negative and although most vehicle manufacturers have equipped their vehicles with overvoltage protector devices, damage may still happen in the split second before the fuse in the system blows.
- Always connect the positive leads of both batteries first, then the negative leads. This will “soften” the flow of power through the earthing system and prevent power surges or spikes.
- Never attempt to connect the jump leads with the key in the ignition, only insert the key once the leads have been connected. Failure to adhere to this may lead to the coding between the key and the ECU becoming corrupted and in many instances this corruption is irreversible.
“If you are in doubt on how to jump start your vehicle, seek the advice of your nearest MIWA accredited workshop in your area who will be happy to explain the proper jumpstarting procedures to you,” Ranft concludes.
The recently adopted South African Automotive Masterplan (SAAM) seeks to drive localisation and transformation in the local automotive sector, with the NAACAM Show 2019 positioned to be a key driver of its implementation.
Organisers have developed compelling and customised offers to firms in these sectors that can support the automotive value chain to overcome blockages to localisation.
This week Johannesburg motorists experienced a devastating hailstorm leaving many unsuspecting vehicle owners diving for cover under highway bridges, roadside trees or speeding toward their nearest garage.
Many of those unlucky motorists, who were not in time to seek cover, now find themselves with vehicles looking anything but in mint showroom condition.
Richard Green, National Director of the South African Motor Body Repairer’s Association (SAMBRA), a constituent association of the Retail Motor Industry Organization (RMI), says his outlets always experience a flood of enquiries from concerned motorists after hailstorms such as this one.
Green says it is advisable to get a professional assessment of the damage from a reputable repairer that is well equipped to deal with hail damaged vehicles. The repairer can also provide advice on how best to proceed with repairs.
“Depending on the depth of the dent left by the hailstone, the dents can be removed by a process known as PDR or paint-less dent removal,” says Green. This process utilizes trained professionals and involves specialised tooling which accesses the metal panels from the inside and manipulates the dent until it is completely repaired. Green says this method is used internationally by insurers. “The only cautionary note here,” he says, “is that horizontal panels, such as your roof, bonnet and boot may have been subjected to so many hailstones that removing them using the PDR method may stretch the metal and in cases such as these the panel may need to be replaced.
In most cases, however, the vertical panels will not be affected to the same extent and can be easily repaired using the PDR method,” he says.
All SAMBRA-accredited members either have full time employed PDR specialists or make use of specialists who operate independently.
In the unfortunate event that you are caught in a hailstorm, Green provides the following advice to motorists:
- Keep calm – The first and golden rule is to keep calm, lower your speed and ensure your lights or hazards are turned on for increased visibility.
- Find a safe place to pull over – Ideally it is preferable to try and pull over and wait out the storm where there is some cover. You must, however, always remain in your car to avoid personal injury. Also be cautious of stopping under large trees where there is a danger of falling branches and debris. Position your car so the windshield bears the brunt of the hail – This glass is the strongest glass and is specially reinforced. The side and rear windows aren’t as strong and are more prone to breakage.
- Keep a heavy blanket/s in your boot – Another idea is to keep heavy blankets in your car. This will provide you with a protective covering that you can throw over the bonnet of your car to prevent hail damage.
- If your car is damaged, evaluate your options – If you are insured, call your insurance company immediately and notify them as to what has happened. Follow their advice as each insurer has its own cover, terms and conditions and required processes to follow. In general, it is advisable to take photos of your vehicle and submit them to your insurer. Depending on the claims process, your insurer will evaluate your vehicle and recommend applicable options.
In some cases you may elect to manage some of the repairs yourself, such as replacing damaged wiper blades or a smashed headlight. If you are insured let your insurance company know of your intent to do so.
“A hailstorm is a catastrophic event and places enormous pressure on both insurers and repairers so the length of normally accepted repair cycles may be slightly longer over the next couple of weeks,” concludes Green.
Fulfils the requirements for all the Associations within the RMI:
John Hempel from RMI4OHS will be conducting training in Capetown on 14 February 2019
OHS Act & Regulations (includes basic Risk Assessment)
Health and Safety Representative(includes Incident Investigation)
Ensuring that your company adheres to the requirements of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.
An electronic certificate of competence for Health and Safety Representative will be issued on successful completion of the course.
This session fulfils the requirements of understanding the requirements of the OHS
Act & Regulations in respect of, amongst others, electrical plugs and wiring, fire extinguishers, Personal Protective Equipment (P.P.E.), machine guards, medical testing,
hazardous chemical substances, emergency procedures, ventilation, noise and basic
This session fulfils the requirements of ensuring that your Health and Safety Representatives are certified and competent to undertake their duties and responsibilities in such a manner that it takes the workload off the employer, and ensures that the Health and Safety function runs smoothly. This module also includes Incident Investigation training.
The Buffalo Club, Buffalo Park Drive
Tel. 043 743 0814
TIME: 08h15 – 16h00
COSTS: R970.00 per person (includes
VAT @15%, refreshments, lunch, course material
and an electronic certificate)
INCENTIVE: Should more than one person from the same company attend the
training on the same day, the cost reduces to R 875.00 per person (all inclusive).
TERMS AND CONDITIONS:
- In order for you to secure your place, advanced booking is essential.
- Booking closes on 07 February 2019.
- Complete the registration form (page 2) and return to us. We will then issue you
with a tax invoice, providing our banking details.
- If no email/fax confirmation of your application is received within three days, please contact us to confirm receipt.
- Please only make payment on receipt of our invoice and quote the invoice
number as payment reference.
- Payment method: Electronic transfer or direct payment into Compliance SA’s
- Full payment to be done in advance.
- Your booking will only be confirmed on receipt of your proof of payment and
money reflecting in our bank account.
- Cancellations made within 5 days of the date of the training course will be liable
for the full fee. (Substitutions may be made at any time, just advise us please).
- We reserve the right to change/cancel the course date.
Please click here to download the registration form.
The TDAFA represents more than 700 members in the tyre fitment industry throughout the country and also represents the leading tyre retreaders in South Africa. The TDAFA’s accreditation criteria and applicable legislation ensures the production of good quality and safe retreaded tyres.
The Associational AGMs were completed across all regions culminating in the National AGM in October. The TDAFA is pleased to confirm that Frans Maritz continues as National Chairperson for the next year and Morne Viviers continues as National Vice-Chairperson.
The full committee is as follows:
- Frans Maritz – Western Cape and National Chairperson
- Morne Viviers – OFS/NC and National Vice-Chairperson
- Les Richardson – Northern Region (Pretoria)
- Angie Frederic – KZN
- Sean Jevon – Border Region (East London)
- Robert van der Merwe -Eastern Cape (Port Elizabeth)
- Nazim Perrin – Highveld (Johannesburg)
These are the regional Chairpersons who currently represent your best interests at all levels in the areas where the RMI/TDAFA are involved. Should you wish to contact any one of the Regional Chairpersons, please contact Hedey Judd for the specific contact details of the relevant Chairperson.
Occupational Health and Safety
The TDAFA has been instrumental in providing full service Occupational Health and Safety compliance through a negotiated service level agreement with Complete Specialised Retail Solutions (CSRS). The most important part of this service is that it is a one-stop solution to the legal requirement for compliance as per the OHS Act of 1993.
Earlier in the year the Department of Labour published a notice in which it declared that a large number of new inspectors have been deployed into the general industry. The Department of Labour has elevated the emphasis on the need to comply with the law. The need for compliance is to ensure the safest working environment for all the employees of the company.
There are certain functions of compliance that can only be performed by a registered OHS practitioner, including conducting an accurate risk assessment of the premises and certifying the bi-annual compulsory evacuation drill, which is required by the Act.
Vehicle lifts, jacks and hoists are required to be serviced every six months and then inspected every twelve months. These inspections and services are not conducted by an OHS practitioner, but rather by a qualified and certified Lifting Mechanic and then certified by a qualified and certified inspector. Fire extinguishers are also required to be serviced and inspected at specified time intervals.
While this article is not by any means intended to provide a comprehensive list of the requirements, the emphasis is on a few items, and highlights that full compliance can only be achieved with the service of qualified and certified OHS practitioners on site.
The importance of the correct torque specifications
A1 posters featuring an informative Guide to Torquing of wheel nuts and bolts are available for display and education of both customers and staff. This is the first in a series of posters aimed at meeting a number of objectives.
The posters are available from the TDAFA office in Pretoria and Cape Town free of charge (for the first one only) to TDAFA members.
The TDAFA corporate member franchisors have agreed to the display of the posters in their outlets, as part of the agreed advertising and display material.
Requests for posters can be directed to Jodaree on (031) 266 7031 or directly with Hedley Judd.
Transformation and Incubation
The reality is that the South African business environment is forced to transform. The TDAFA recognises that this places a burden of sorts on the existing businesses currently operating. However all problems offer opportunities, especially for the early adopters.
The opportunity that has been identified by our BBBEE consulting partners revolves around the functional incubation of SMME businesses.
There are a huge number of informal tyre operators in the industry, who have no exposure to business systems, operate with limited equipment, and more often than not have no access to the new-tyre supply chain. Herein lies the biggest opportunity.
The formal dealer has the opportunity to engage with informal tyre dealers, with a view to bolstering their business into the formal sector by providing training in business skills, access to new tyres and products, and advising on equipment purchasing and maintenance.
The benefits of these types of relationships include the impact on BBBEE level scoring of the formal business, work place enterprise skills development, and increased unit volume sales of new tyres and products, either on a cash basis or a very short-term credit system. Assistance with the identification of these potential informal sector incubation partners can be facilitated through the RMI Transformation department.
Job Grading accuracy and 2019 Wage Negotiations
It is common knowledge that the next 12 months will see the RMI negotiators hard at work on behalf of the employers to ensure an acceptable outcome from the next three-year wage and main agreement review. During the early stages of 2019 there will be a call on members of the RMI to provide guidance to the negotiators in the form of a mandate to proceed with. These mandate meetings are important opportunities for the RMI members to be involved in the potential outcomes.
In preparation of this process, it remains important for all dealers to ensure that the staff employed in the business are correctly graded according to the function of the job being performed. The TDAFA can assist with any need of staff grading verification in order to be compliant with the Main Agreement.
Fourth Industrial Revolution and the hype around it into the future
With all the hype around the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4iR) it is perhaps of interest to explore the concept.
4iR which is currently being implemented worldwide, is about the heightening of automation in the production environment. The question on everyone’s lips remains: what will happen with the unskilled labour force? Good news is that the gurus on the subject are claiming that there will be 30% more jobs created than lost.
The concept of 4iR brings with it the opportunity to change the way unskilled people are required to interact with robotics. It does not completely rule out the role of the worker as there are still many examples of tasks that cannot possibly be done by machines.
Additionally, 4iR will generate jobs around the production of robots and automation machines, an area of of business that is expected to accelerate exponentially in the near future.
The ultimate goal of 4iR is for manufacturing to be able to produce the volumes of products needed to meet the excessive demands for products worldwide. The demand is also not only for quantity but also for increased quality and consistency through continuous improvement programmes. In summary, 4iR is intended to bring about faster production, better production, faster delivery, less inventory, lower costs, and better ROI for the shareholders.
Waste Tyre liaison on behalf of the dealers
It is no secret that the waste tyre system is not what it is supposed to be as far as service is concerned. The RMI and TDAFA has been working constantly to find a solution to the situation, even if only an interim solution, to carry dealers through the peak seasons of November and December.
One of the contributing factors to the poor service is the fact that many tyre dealers have not registered with the Waste Bureau during the last 12 months. This lack of registration means that the Bureau is not aware of the dealer site that requires servicing.
When REDISA was liquidated in 2017, one of the things that was not secured was the dealer database, hence the call for registration with the Bureau directly. As of the end of October 2018 only 30% of all dealers had registered, despite this being a legal requirement. The TDAFA has been able to keep the opportunity to register open through constant liaison with the Department of Environmental Affairs.
This relationship with the Bureau has seen the TDAFA act as an intermediary between the dealers and the bureau, to maintain a degree of control over the demands for collections with varying degrees of success.
Currently there is no formal Waste Tyre Plan in place outside of the efforts of the Waste Bureau, despite plans being submitted in December 2017, with no official approval or rejection by the Minister to date.
During a high-level meeting with the Minister in October the plight of the Dealers was stressed in detail, with emphasis on the need for sufficient service delivery during the peak season. The Bureau was tasked by the Minister to ensure sufficient systems were in place for the peak season.
The TDAFA awaits final details on these arrangements for the November and December period and will provide further details via the RMI weekly webletter as they become available.
The TDAFA continues to provide a hotline service to elevate waste tyre collections across the country. Dealers who are experiencing Waste Tyre Collection issues can contact Hedley Judd who will forward this request to the Bureau and the Department for action.
Hedley Judd can be contacted directly at Hedley.email@example.com or on 071 892 1475.