Mechanical Alert: Steering bracket failure on off-highway log truck

Safety Alert Type: 
Log Hauling
Vancouver Island
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
Company Name: 
Western Forest Products Inc.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A 1980 model Pacific P-16 off highway log truck was backing out of a fuelling site when the driver heard a bang. The driver noticed that his steering had stopped working.

Upon investigation, it was discovered the bracket that connects the steering ram to the draglink had broken. The failed bracket was supplied by a machine shop in Campbell River, BC. A bracket of the same design had failed a few months prior to this incident. However the supplier was unknown.

The manufacturer of the part did a failure analysis and found that the way the brackets were made could cause a premature failure. The bracket is now made in a different way and reinforced to avoid the failure (see photos in attached pdf).

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  • The steering brackets on all off-highway trucks with a Vickers Steering Ram on the driver’s side should be checked to see if they look like the failed bracket. The failed brackets have short gussets that do not extend past the bore for the draglink ball stud. They also have a tapered boss welded into the bottom plate for the ball stud to be anchored to.
  • These brackets with shorter gussets and welded-in ball stud bosses could have been made by different manufacturers over several years. If your truck has a steering bracket with shorter gussets it should be removed and replaced with a bracket that has been engineered to withstand the steering load of these trucks. Consult your Parts supplier for the correct bracket.
  • Brackets that have a solid 2” bottom plate that has the taper for the ball stud machined into it and has gussets that extend past the ball stud bore are proven in this application.
  • Any time a draglink steering bracket is removed it should be cleaned and inspected for cracks.


For more information on this submitted alert: 

Western Forest Products Inc. - Bob Glisinski (250) 283-2840

File attachments
Safety_Alert_WFP-Steering Bracket-2015-4-28.pdf
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