Safety alert 17/2009 - Employee injured while inflating tyre–no warning signs

This publication is for: 
Employee / workerEmployer

In May 2009, an employee at a service station was injured when she attempted to pump air into tyres of a ‘divided wheel’ (split rim) on a hand trolley using the standard air hose.  The employee had received no training for this task.  The trolley tyre exploded causing a laceration to the employee’s hand resulting in a possible 6 months lost time.

Divided wheels or split rims are those wheels in which the rim is in two halves, which are bolted together.  They are most often fitted to wheelbarrows and trolleys used in service stations and retail shops and only hand pump/foot pumps should be used to inflate such pieces of plant.

At the service station where the accident happened there were no warning signs posted next to or near the air hose or tyre inflation point.  Therefore the users were unaware of the dangers of using an air hose on bicycles, wheelbarrows, hand trolleys, footballs, basketballs and other sporting equipment.

Factors to consider

  • The employees had not received training for inflating trolley tyres.
  • Neither a hand pump nor a foot pump had been provided.
  • There were no warning signs posted next to or near the air hose or tyre inflation points.


  • Only use a foot or hand pump to fill the following tyre types:
    • Bicycle;
    • Wheelbarrows;
    • Hand trolleys; 
    • Footballs, basketballs and other sporting equipment.
  • Warning signs should be in place.

Further information

Further information can be obtained from WorkSafe’s website or by contacting customer service on 1300 307 877 or email

This Alert contains safety information following enquires made by WorkSafe about an incident or unsafe practice. The information contained in this Alert does not necessarily include the outcome of WorkSafe’s action with respect to an incident.  WorkSafe does not warrant the information in this Alert is complete or up to date and does not accept any liability to any person for the information in this report or as to its use.

Last updated 29 Jun 2017

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