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Driver Safety, How Well do You know Your Tyres?
Tyre-related deaths and injuries preventable say Highways England and Bridgestone
Almost three quarters of motorway incidents related to tyre failure could be prevented if drivers carry out simple checks, according to new research released.
More than 30 people were killed or seriously injured in motorway accidents in 2016 due to illegal or faulty tyres. But an 18-month study says commuters, commercial drivers and other road users can do a lot more to help reduce accidents through regular checking. today by Highways England and tyre company Bridgestone. For more on this article from SHP (Safety & Health Practitioner) click here.
At Safewell we are often out on the road travelling between Health & Safety and Occupational Health clients negotiating busy and often poorly maintained roads which greatly increase the wear and tear on our vehicles and especially tyres. Due to this we all have a duty to maintain our vehicles with regular servicing and also doing personal checks, eg checking oil, lights, screen wash and tyres. Try also to be aware of wheel tracking and balancing. Click here if you’ve been putting off changing those tyres.
Tyre Wear and Depth and performances
All tyres do not offer the same performances between them when they are new these performance differences increase as tyres wear. Cutting edge technologies developed by the research and development teams at Michelin, allow us to offer a level of perfromance and grip close to new tyres during their whole life all the way down to the legal wear limit. Due to this level of performance, replacing tyres prematurely is not guaranteed to lead to a gain in safety and performance, and there is the obvious financial cost but also an enviromental cost to consider.
The legal minimum tread depth in UK is 1.6 mm across the central three-quarters of the tread width and round its entire circumference. Check the depth of the main tread grooves in several places across and around the tyre, using the gauge as instructed by its manufacturer. Tyres also have tread wear indicators moulded into the base of the main grooves. When the tread surface is worn to the same level as these indicators, the tyre is at the legal limit and should be replaced.
However you check your tyre tread depths, if they are approaching the legal limit or if you have any doubts, get them checked professionally by a tyre specialist.
Correct tyre pressure reduces the risk of losing control of your vehicle. It also protects your tyres from premature wear and irreversible damage to the internal construction. Tyre pressure can drop due to small perforations, the natural escape of air through the tyre’s components, or even from a decrease in ambient temperatures. Check the pressure of your tyres, including your spare, monthly and before any long journey, preferably when your tyres are cold (not having run for at least 2 hours or having run for less than 2 miles at low speed). If they are not checked in this cold condition, add 4 to 5 PSI (0.3 bar) to the recommended pressure, but never deflate a hot tyre. It’s important to check the pressure once a month, because:
Under or over inflation can reduce the life of your tyres, affect their performance and increase the risk of damage.
Correct tyre pressure will even save fuel.
The recommended tyre pressure can be found:
- In the user manual of your vehicle
- or on a label on the door or door frame of the vehicle
- or on the inside of the fuel flap
The recommended tyre pressure is NOT located on the tyre. The inflation pressure shown on the tyre sidewall is the maximum tyre inflation pressure.