|Tyres below 1.6mm and showing wire|
Irish Tyre Industry Association (ITIA) members around Ireland are inviting all motorists to call in for a free tyre pressure check and thread depth inspection during RSA Road Safety Week taking place this week until Sunday 7 October, writes Trish Whelan. A visit to www.itia.ie will lead motorists to their nearest ITIA registered dealer.
Many drivers do not consider that the only point of contact their vehicle has with the road is the tyres on their vehicle. The condition of those tyres is fundamental to road safety. Damaged and worn tyres can put your life at risk; sudden braking distances are doubled in length; aquaplaning can occur in wet conditions; and even a blow-out can result which could lead to loss of control of the vehicle.
Driving on dangerous or under-inflated tyres puts your life and the lives of other road users at risk. It can also lead to penalty points and a fine of up to €2,500.
Poor tyre conditions are now the leading cause of vehicles failing their NCT Test. Tyre related failures fall into three categories: Tyre thread depth below the legal 1.6mm limit; cuts or bulges to a tyre; and mismatched tyres on the same axle.
ITIA President, Paddy Murphy (pictured), who represents all sectors in the tyre industry in Ireland, said: “Few people realise the impact that faulty tyres have on your safety and we all need to be aware that lives can be saved by regular tyre management. During our Tyre Thursday campaign this summer, all tyres on that date, coming into our members’ outlets were inspected. We found that 25pc of all tyres inspected were at or below the legal limit of 1.6mm which shows that not enough motorists are taking care of their tyres.”
The benefits of proper tyre maintenance include improved safety; improved car handling and braking; longer tyre life and a reduction in C02 emissions.
Paddy Murphy is asking all motorists to avail of the ITIA members’ offer this week and check that their tyres are in order before winter comes in.
Moyagh Murdock, Chief Executive, Road Safety Authority (pictured) says their own analysis of Garda fatal investigation files between 2008 and 2012 shows that an average of 14 people died annually in crashes where defective tyres were a significant pre-crash factor.
She says it is vitally important to ensure your tyres are fit for purpose. “To highlight just how serious an issue tyre safety is, the recent introduction of new EU wide regulations now means that defective tyres are deemed a fail at the annual NCT and CVRT roadworthiness tests.”