ROAD SAFETY AND breakdown organisation GEM Motoring Assist is encouraging car owners to make monthly checks of pressures and tread on their tyres. And for anyone concerned that they may not know safe from dangerous, GEM’s recently-released short videos show just how quick and simple a tyre check can be.
GEM’s call comes at the start of Tyre Safety Month (1 October), with its key safety message urging drivers not to ignore their tyres, and to check them once a month.
GEM road safety officer Neil Worth explains why correct tyre pressure is not only vital for your safety on the road, it’s also the best way to maximise fuel economy. “We rely on our tyres to keep us safe on journeys,” he says. “They provide the only contact between the car we’re driving and the road surface beneath. Correctly inflated tyres with good levels of tread allow all the other safety systems on a car to work at their most effective – vital in an emergency situation.
“Inadequate tread or incorrect pressure mean the safety systems on your vehicle simply will not work as efficiently. That’s why we fully support Tyre Safety Month and the call for all drivers to make monthly checks on their tyres – to ensure correct pressure and tread depth.
“If anyone’s in doubt about how to make these checks, and what to look out for, then please take a look at the short videos we published recently, one dealing with tyre pressure, the other with tyre tread. They show just how simple a task it is to make sure your tyres are in good condition, and advise on what to do if you come up against any problems.”
GEM tyre warnings:
- There are heavy penalties for drivers using worn or defective tyres on their cars. Each bald or defective tyre carries a fine of up to £2,500 and three penalty points.
- Under-inflated tyres reduce your vehicle’s ability to grip the road, and also compromise handling. This can result in unpredictable vehicle behaviour, and increases the risk of a tyre blowout, where sudden rapid deflation occurs.
- Over-inflated tyres have a smaller contact area with the road, leading to increased stopping distance and reduced grip. There’s likely to be a lot more wear across the central part of the tyre, leading to a shorter lifespan.
GEM is supporting Tyre Safety Month, which runs nationwide until 31 October 2019.
GEM Motoring Assist | How To Guides
As a motoring and road safety organisation, we want to help keep you safe on the road. So here are our quick and handy guides to carrying out some simple car maintenance, including looking after your tyres, windscreen and MOT checks to do at home.
DON’T IGNORE YOUR TYRES, SAYS TYRESAFE
TyreSafe is encouraging the UK’s drivers to Look Who’s Talking and get into the routine of checking their tyres at least every month this Tyre Safety Month.
TyreSafe’s annual campaign throughout October aims to address the issue of more than half of Britain’s motorists driving on poorly maintained or defective tyres. In doing so, they are increasing fuel consumption, tyre wear and the risk of an incident on the road.
That results in the UK’s drivers wasting at least £600 million annually on fuel, while nearly 170 are regrettably killed or seriously injured in tyre-related incidents. That average number of casualties has been consistently higher than those caused by mobile phone use while driving over the past five years.
Driving without the correct amount of air in tyres makes a vehicle more difficult to control and reduces the amount of grip it has on the road. It also increases fuel bills, tyre wear and the risk of being involved in an incident.
Lumps, bumps, cracks and cuts are a sign your tyre may be dangerous and need replacing.
All tyres should have a tread depth above the minimum legal limit of 1.6mm to ensure the tyre remains in contact with the road in the wet. Over 27% of tyres are already illegal when they are replaced and over 70% of tyres are below 2mm when replaced.
Drivers are also being encouraged to sign up to TyreSafe’s social media channels to receive regular tyre safety advice and get involved by sharing the Don’t Ignore Your Tyres message with others and post a photo of yourself carrying out #TyreChecks
The Tyre Safety Month message is being supported up and down the country throughout October with local participating tyre dealers offering a FREE tyre safety check.
TyreSafe Chairman, Stuart Jackson said: “Look Who’s Talking and the supporting strapline Don’t Ignore Your Tyres highlight the core challenge that needs to be overcome to reduce the number of tyre-related incidents – behaviour change among motorists. While it might sound like an elementary campaign title, feedback from our partners, in conjunction with what TyreSafe team members also witness first-hand, underlines there is still a need for basic education of a significant proportion of drivers.
“There may be a section who consciously choose to ignore road safety messages but there is good reason to believe a far larger number would act on the advice if they were made aware of it. We encourage all motorists to support Tyre Safety Month and increase awareness of tyre safety in Britain.”
These are three simple checks which motorists can do themselves:
- Air pressure: the vehicle manufacturer provides at least two air pressure recommendations – one for light loads and another when fully loaded. Use an accurate pressure gauge and to ensure the vehicle’s tyres are at the correct settings
- Condition: Every tyre should be free of cuts, lumps or bulges. If you see anything unexpected, have it inspected by a professional
- Tread depth: in Britain, the legal limit for a car tyre’s tread depth is 1.6mm. Adequate tread helps keep the tyre in contact with the road, especially in the wet, and reduces the chances of aquaplaning
To take part in Tyre Safety Month or for further information on tyre safety, log on to tyresafe.org
TyreSafe is the UK’s charity dedicated to raising awareness of the importance of correct tyre maintenance and the dangers of defective and illegal tyres (registration number 1168354). In 2009, TyreSafe was awarded with the Prince Michael International Road Safety Award in recognition of its achievements in raising awareness about the dangers associated with driving on defective and worn tyres.
TyreSafe supports the government’s ACT ON CO2 campaign which promotes Smarter Driving tips to help cut CO2 emissions from driving. TyreSafe is a signatory to the European Road Safety Charter which aims to reduce road fatalities. TyreSafe is a supporter of the UN Decade of Action for Road Safety which aims to make roads safer and save lives.
GEM Motoring Assist
GEM Motoring Assist provides two levels of recovery service; Recovery EXTRA and Recovery RECLAIM, to suit all needs and pockets. GEM provides a unique, comprehensive and competitively-priced Roadside Assistance and Vehicle Recovery Service. GEM has been voted number one for Breakdown Cover, or has been a close runner up, in the Auto Express Driver Power Survey for the last 12 years. GEM breakdown cover has also been awarded a 5 star rating by Defaqto, meaning GEM provides one of the highest quality offerings in the market. In May 2018, GEM became a Which? Recommended Provider after coming first in their survey of breakdown recovery providers.
GEM Motoring Assist was established in 1932, as an independent driver-based road safety association. GEM’s aim is to improve safety for all road users through the sponsorship and initiation of accident prevention measures throughout the UK and to provide motoring and safety information to its own members. Member benefits include a quarterly magazine, free literature and advice and discounts on insurances and other services. Press information: Neil Worth, Road Safety and Motoring Information Officer, is available for comment on 01342-825676 (office) or 07798 663663 (mobile). Neil has worked within policing and community safety for more than 20 years.
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