Over three-quarters of European tyre population under-inflated: Bridgestone
Data from Bridgestone’s Safety Campaign 2012 has revealed that 78.3 per cent of tyres on the 28,700 cars inspected across Europe throughout the year were under-inflated to varying degrees. Additionally, 25.6 per cent of the tyre population was found to be worn below 1.6mm. The company completes a survey during its safety check workshops across Europe each year, and the latest data shows an increase in the number of tyres found to be under-inflated.
Within the large group of under-inflated tyres, two more serious groupings were also identified by Bridgestone. 28.4 per cent of tyres tested were “seriously under-inflated”, which the manufacturer defines as 0.5bar under the reference pressure, while 5.2 per cent were “severely under-inflated”, or 0.75bar under the correct level. As well as drawing conclusions about the safety of the vehicles, referencing reduced handling for example, Bridgestone concluded that these groups were collectively responsible for 73 per cent of the 9.9 million tons of extra carbon dioxide production in Europe due to under-inflated tyres. It estimates that the 5.2 per cent of severely under-inflated tyres accounted for more than a third (36 per cent) of this figure.
Bridgestone’s region north communications manager Andy Dingley commented: “The results reveal that poorly maintained tyres are posing a serious risk to drivers, their passengers and other road users. We urge motorists to check their tyres before leaving on long journeys and before returning home.”
Bridgestone recommends regular tread depth, tyre pressure and damage or wear checks before long journeys typically taken in the summer for holidays.
Dingley added: “Worn tread, incorrect inflation pressure, damage and irregular wear all have a range of negative effects, including higher fuel consumption, reduced life and compromised safety. Worn or damaged tyres are prone to blowing out while driving, potentially causing driver to lose control of their vehicle.”