The Union has been engaged in ongoing discussions with Telstra regarding members’ reports of wheels on LC70 GXL Toyota Landcruiser vehicles failing sporadically.
This is a serious safety matter that may put members, and other road users, at risk.
Telstra reports that they are continuing to work with Toyota and other suppliers to understand and address the root cause of the issue. Early indications are that the issue may relate to exceeding the 2300kg load limit on the vehicle’s rear axle.
Additional measures that have been implemented include:
- Services must be carried out by the authorised Toyota services centre and if not possible due to location, an exception is only approved if the alternative service centre is able to implement all required protocols.
- Toyota have included all LC70 GXL Landcruiser series that have had studs replaced into a Nation Recall type program. As part of this program, they will ensure a visual inspection protocol is carried out at the next service (i.e. equivalent to at least a 20,000km interval service regardless of mileage).
- Telstra is working to ensure all vehicles over 150,000k/3 years are replaced and are reviewing and testing possible replacement vehicles based on different usage scenarios.
- Development and roll out of training related to safety measures when changing a tyre, identifying a loose wheel nut and tension checks.
Your Union remains in constant contact with members in the field who operate these vehicles and, at this time, recommends continuing to utilise the Wheel Nut Daily Check App to take photos of each wheel as part of your start of day check.
For those who are travelling remotely or in offroad settings, Telstra have distributed a torque wrench with detailed instructions on how to safely use this to check the wheel nuts as a further safety measure.
It is important, however, that members do not make assumptions when making decisions about their safety. Our members are not qualified mechanical engineers, and as such, should exercise extreme caution when determining whether they believe a vehicle is safe to be used.
If upon visually expecting your vehicle you are not confident in making this determination, and whilst driving, if you experience unusual vehicle behaviour or notice any unusual noises, the Union recommends immediately stopping the vehicle and advising your team leader that you fear an imminent risk to your health and safety and refuse to operate the vehicle any further.
Arrangements should be made to tow the vehicle to the nearest authorised service centre and arrangements to transport members home or to an alternate vehicle, should be made by Telstra. If you are required to make your own arrangements, the cost of making these arrangements should be covered by Telstra.
We will keep members up to date as this matter evolves. Until a permanent solution is found, should you require any further information or assistance, please contact your State Branch Official, immediately.
Should you require any further information, please contact Assistant Secretaries Cameron Bird, Peter Chaloner or Nick Townsend, or Branch Officials Cade Anderson, Lisa Bahls, Nick Bentley, Chris Gleeson, Phil Kessey, TK Ly, Robbie McLauchlan, Liam Murphy, Peter O’Connell, Brett O’Neill, Giselle Saba, Dharmpal SIngh or Dennis Williams on (02) 9893 7822 when calling from NSW or the ACT, (07) 3255 0440 from QLD or (08) 8443 7389 from SA or the NT.
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