FOR over a decade Bill Haire has built and perfected the bag suspension kit fitted to hundreds of trucks and heavy vehicles across Australia and New Zealand.
The Haire system has won recognition and praise from transport operators and engineering academics. Mr Haire said he struggled to get government support to assist with manufacture and export of a kit he claims can significantly lessen road damage and enhance road safety.
Every time his company has approached government, the system has had to undergo the same testing.
"I've done more testing than anyone in Australia," he said.
But the real evidence of the Haire Bag Suspensions success is its performance for transport operators on some of the nation's toughest and roughest roads.
One of the biggest compliments had been having the system fitted to a truck that carried highly specialised radar equipment on outback roads during a joint US-Australian military exercise.
"Trucks that were on the road for two seasons between Weipa and Cairns needed only shock absorbers and brake pads replaced," he said.
"This is some of the hardest work you get on the roads."
Paddy Knight of Knights Transport in Queensland said he will never go back to the standard airbag or spring suspension after using the Haire system for six years.
"There is no comparison; you get better braking, traction and a much better ride. It's got me beat why it is not throughout the industry," said Mr Knight.
"It's better for the road, the truck and it's freight-friendly."
Engineering academic Dr Arnold McLean from the University of Wollongong, who has continued his studies after retirement, said the system was road-friendly and had the potential to save millions of dollars in road repairs annually.
Dr McLean has estimated it would take three years to fit every truck in Australia with the Haire system, but it would still be cheaper than pouring money into road repairs. He said he would give a paper to the Australian College of Road Safety later this year, seeking to break the inertia on provision of safety allowance that would provide the initial expenditure to have the system retro-fitted.
"The other advantage with Bill's system is braking, the suspension will outbrake the latest of ABS systems and that is safer," said Dr McLean.
Contact Bill from Haire Truck & Bus on 02 6056 2399.
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