29 May 2017

Tyre offences enforcement criticised

A criticism of the enforcement of tyre-related offences has been made by Continental Tyres Ireland, writes Brian Byrne.

Following an analysis of the penalty points applied for such offences since they came into force last May, Continental’s Tom Dennigan said the company was ‘very disappointed’ at the ‘extremely low level of enforcement’.

The analysis showed that there were just 853 fixed penalty notices issued for tyre condition offences, compared to 27,755 notices issued in 2016 for mobile phone offences.

“Our own analysis of replacement tyres at tyre depots around the country has shown that vehicles running on dangerous or illegal tyres are extremely common,” Mr Dennigan said. “We would therefore have expected the number of tyre-related penalty point notices to be much higher than the recorded figure.”

That investigation showed that badly worn and damaged tyres uncovered in the analysis included a full range of faults including tread depth worn to below the legal limit of 1.6mm and in some cases, worn right down so that the wire carcass of the tyre can be seen.

Lumps, bulges and holes in tyres again showing the wire ‘carcass’ of the tyre were also found, and uneven wear with one side of the tyre worn down to dangerous levels due to incorrect balancing and tyre tracking.

Pictured is a tyre from a BMW 5 Series in Carlow, showing a dangerously degraded tyre with the wire showing. The driver of this car would be liable for penalty points under the tyre safety penalty points regime.