As thousands of families prepare for the traditional Easter holiday getaway, one of the busiest times of the year on the roads, TyreSafe is reminding them about the need to check their tyres before setting off. It warns failure to do so could result in a number of tyre related problems leaving passengers stranded by the roadside or even involved in a completely avoidable accident.
“After such a dismal winter, many families will be looking forward to some time away over Easter,” comments Stuart Jackson, chairman, TyreSafe. “But with the prospect of April showers, more cars on the road and more heavily laden vehicles, it’s important to give your tyres a proper inspection before setting off. These checks are quick and easy to perform but essential as they could make the difference between an enjoyable Easter break or not.”
Indeed, figures from the AA showed that in 2013, their patrols attended 350,000 tyre-related call-outs, their second most common breakdown cause after batteries.
Before embarking on any Easter travel, TyreSafe is advising drivers check three key areas of their tyres. Pressures should be checked to ensure they are in line with the vehicle manufacturer’s recommendations for the load being carried. The correct details can be found in the vehicle handbook, inside the fuel filler cap or on a plate on the driver’s door sill.
Correct pressure is important as it helps to reduce the amount of fuel being used, ensures even wear across the tread leading to longer tyre life, and reduces tyre overheating which can cause rapid failures.
Drivers are also being reminded to ensure their tread depth is above the legal minimum of 1.6mm which can be checked using TyreSafe’s 20p test. Drivers with insufficient tread depth not only risk fines of up to £2,500 and three penalty points for each illegal tyre, but safety will be reduced on wet roads as the tyre will lose grip with the road surface more easily.
When checking pressures and tread depth, drivers are also being advised to give the rest of the tyre a thorough visual inspection for other signs of damage such as cuts, lumps or bulges in the tyre. If any of these are present, TyreSafe recommends that drivers visit their nearest tyre fitting centre for further inspection by a qualified professional.
“Preparing your car for the Easter getaway isn’t complicated but is extremely important,” concludes Jackson. “If you’re unsure on any aspect then please call in to your local tyre fitting centre who will be pleased to help you and ensure you have a great break.”
For more information about how to perform pre-travel safety checks, including a range of easy-to-understand advice videos and animations, visit www.tyresafe.org.