TyreSafe and member Protyre are supporting Operation Pennine at road safety events along the M62 corridor in the first week of October’s Tyre Safety Month. The initiative is dedicated to improving road safety by ensuring that vehicles are in proper working condition, with a specific focus on tyres, brakes, lights, and other essential components. TyreSafe is playing a crucial role in supporting Operation Pennine, according to chair Stuart Lovatt: “We are delighted to partner with Operation Pennine in their mission to enhance road safety. Properly maintained tyres are a fundamental aspect of safe driving, and our participation in this initiative aligns perfectly with our objectives.” Read more on Tyrepress sister site, WhatTyre.
With wet autumn weather yielding treacherous driving conditions, road safety charity TyreSafe is urging drivers to remain diligent and prioritise safety on the road. The Met Office’s yellow weather warnings for heavy rainfall mean roads can pose significant challenges for motorists, but quality tyres in good condition can significantly improve safety in deep water. A TyreSafe video, embedded below, demonstrates how well-maintained tyres can help avoid aquaplaning.
A survey of 2,000 UK car owners conducted online by Research Without Barriers on behalf of Bridgestone generated some damning figures for tyre safety. Of the drivers surveyed, 81 per cent admitted to never checking their tyres, and only 14 per cent described them as the most important safety feature on their cars. Other headline statistics from Bridgestone’s research include 54 per cent not knowing that driving on illegal tyres is an extremely dangerous act, only 31 per cent of motorists admitting to being well informed on road safety matters and just 12 per cent checking their tyre treads once a fortnight, the recommended interval between checks. For more on this story, click through to the consumer tyre advice website from the Tyrepress team, WhatTyre.
More than 7,000 vehicles were given an “MOT refusal” because they were too dangerous, or too excessively dirty, to test. Select Car Leasing presented its findings after making a Freedom of Information request for the top reasons for MOT refusals in 2023 between January and May 2023. Of the 7,000 vehicles given a refusal, 526 were simply “too dirty to examine.” A further 785 MOT tests were refused on the grounds that the state of the vehicle was ‘too dangerous’ for a proper inspection to be carried out, with a threat posed to the tester, surrounding property, and the car itself.
TyreSafe’s annual briefing demonstrated the organisation’s current strategy to expand the distribution of tyre safety information and resources via a broad range of stakeholders. This strategy was exemplified earlier in the year when it announced its partnership with Intelligent Instructor, the resource hub for driving instructors. The dynamic collaboration aims to empower Intelligent Instructor’s vast audience with the latest tyre safety advice and guidance to promote safer driving practices among driving instructors and their learner drivers. In return, TyreSafe said it would gain invaluable opportunities to disseminate their crucial tyre safety message through newsletters and targeted communications.
TyreSafe has held its annual briefing with a slick online presentation designed to demonstrate its direction under a new chair. Presenting contributions from a veritable rollcall of regional and national road safety and risk management stakeholders, chair Stuart Lovatt and TyreSafe manager Jason Simms detailed the last 12 months of TyreSafe’s activities, which have included a tyre safety demonstration day at Mira, the development of new and existing partnerships with road safety organisations such as National Highways, the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety (PACTS), Roadsafe, and several fire and police service representatives, and a range of events in local communities around the country. Lovatt explained how TyreSafe’s work is of crucial importance to the Safe System Approach, the widely accepted strategy on reducing the number of fatalities, casualties and incidents on Britain’s roads. Emma Burley, Tyresafe communications lead, also introduced the 2023 Tyre Safety Month Campaign, ‘Be Safe and Save’, indicating another way in which TyreSafe is tweaking its approach in 2023. The campaign emphasises how maintaining the good condition of tyres fitted to cars also reduce costs to motorists, a tyre safety message designed to resonate deeply in the cost-of-living crisis. TyreSafe also unveiled its latest national tread depth survey, conducted with the assistance of members at the point of replacement. Before launching into the briefing, Lovatt and Simms also paid tribute to previous chair Stuart Jackson, who stepped down after 14 years at the helm last year, prior to Lovatt’s election.
GTS, an Icelandic coach company and tour operator, reports that it has improved the safety of its operation and made significant financial savings since fitting its vehicles with Wheely-Safe technology.
Halfords has attended its first on-ground tyre safety event, marking its tenth anniversary as a member of TyreSafe. The company provided free tyre safety checks to motorists in Blackburn on Friday 28 July at ASDA. Aiming to champion tyre safety and raise awareness of crucial tyre checks in the local community, 75 per cent of tyres received advisories, with perishing a major issue alongside the more commonly understood inflation and tread depth defects. Halfords has recently extended its involvement with the tyre safety organisation, appointing Morgan Jamison, its head of marketing, to the TyreSafe Steering Committee.
Over a third of UK drivers (40%) cannot confidently carry out a tyre tread check, according to new research by automotive marketplace eBay. The research, commissioned by eBay UK and conducted by Toluna, surveyed 2020 total respondents with driver’s licences carried out by Toluna in April 2023, found that more than half (53%) of 18 – 34-year-olds don’t know how to check that their tyre tread is within the legal limit. Apparently, older generations also lack confidence when it comes to tread depth checks, with more than a third of 35-54 year-olds revealing the same knowledge gap.
A recent analysis of over 38 million MOTs conducted in 2021 has found that almost one in five resulted in failure, with tyres the most common cause. Poor condition tyres or not meeting the legal requirement of at least 1.6mm of tread depth contributed to 1,101,839 MOT failures across the UK in a single year. Furthermore, the driver-side front tyre tread depth accounted for more than a quarter of these, the equivalent of 368,853 MOT failures, One Sure Insurance found.
Anyone who abhors saving money or road safety should read no further, for Bridgestone is certain that “thousands of costly punctures on motorways across England can be prevented in a matter of minutes.” The key to achieving this speedy, safety-related saving is, according to a Bridgestone study, regularly inspecting commercial fleet yards for bolts, nails and screws.
People up and down the country will benefit from smoother journeys, reduced congestion, and faster broadband rollout as the government clamps down on utility companies for leaving potholes behind after carrying out street works.
TyreSafe now sits on the National Road Safety Committee, run by the Royal Society of the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) as part of its ongoing wider strategy to increase the awareness of tyre safety. RoSPA’s National Road Safety Committee is a UK-focused network working towards a vision of zero deaths and serious injuries on our roads. It is the principal RoSPA advisory committee on matters of road safety.
TyreSafe has launched its spring tyre safety message, asking drivers, “Do you drive and hope?” The road safety charity wants to spread its message, supported by its ACT acronym, that drivers should check their tyres’ air pressure, condition and tread on a regular basis. Spring is a particularly good time to get this message out, with unpredictable driving conditions due to inclement weather, more heavily laden cars as families travel over the long bank holiday weekends (of which there is one more in 2023 thanks to the coronation of King Charles III), and busier roads.
As part of its response to the Department for Transport’s MOT Consultation, the Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) has researched the views of the motor industry and motorists. Alongside its own in-depth analysis of MOT data, the new research further underlines the IMI’s view that any change to the current date for the first MOT or the frequency of MOTs would significantly increase road user risk. “We received a resounding confirmation – 87 per cent – from our members that the first MOT should not be extended due to increased road safety risk”, explained Hayley Pells, policy manager at the IMI. “And whilst only 51 per cent of motorists we surveyed felt the same, we believe there is sufficient weight of evidence to give the Department for Transport a very clear indication that any change to the start date would be detrimental for all road users.”