Accidents have occurred with mobile equipment when the mechanical cable and sheath accelerator linkage assembly failed to return the engine to idle when the accelerator pedal was released. In one case, this caused a haul truck driver to lose control.
Equipment operators should check the accelerator linkages and pedal operation every shift. During equipment operation, immediately report anything out of the ordinary with how the linkage feels or how the equipment responds.
Equipment mechanics should make it a standard procedure to examine and lubricate accelerator linkages on a regular and frequent basis. Ensure that it is free and functioning properly. On machines using sealed cables, these cables cannot be lubricated. Therefore, they need to be replaced when sticking or lack of easy movement occurs. Check the condition of the return springs. There are normally two return springs, one on the engine and one on the foot pedal. A failed return spring and a slightly sticking cable can result in a loss of control.
It is suggested that routine checks of the accelerator linkage should be done at normal oil change intervals and replacement of wear items, such as cables, springs, bearings, etc. be done at 6,000 hours or every three years, unless otherwise specified by the equipment manufacturer.
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U.S. Department of Labor | Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) | 1100 Wilson Boulevard, 21st Floor | Arlington, VA 22209-3939 www.msha.gov | Telephone: (202) 693-9400 | Fax-on-demand: (202) 693-9401