Third of new drivers ‘have never checked tyres’

11.10 | 14 June 2019 | | 3 comments

The tyre industry must do more to educate new drivers, it has been claimed, following a survey which suggests a third have never checked their car’s tread depths.

FirstCar surveyed more than 1,000 drivers who have recently passed their driving theory or practical test on their attitudes towards tyre safety – in conjunction with Arval, ATS Euromaster and Michelin.

In total, 32% of respondents said they have never checked the tyre tread depths on the car they drive most regularly – with 42% of those saying they didn’t know how to.

A further 37% believed it was someone else’s job – while 18% claimed to be too busy.

It was a similar picture with regard to tyre pressure, with 29% of respondents confessing to having never checked this – because they didn’t know how to (45%), believed it was someone else’s job (33%) or didn’t have time (18%).

However, 55% of respondents said they check their tyre pressure at least once a month; while 82% recognised the minimum legal tread depth as being 1.6mm.

Tracey Fuller, UK head of CSR for Arval, said: “It’s encouraging to hear most new drivers knew the 1.6mm tread depth limit.

“But as an industry and a society as a whole we clearly need to do more to educate new drivers about who is responsible for tyre safety, when tyres should be checked and how to do it.”



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    0.6mm tread is fine in dry weather – and also in wet weather provided one isn’t locking the wheels when braking hard or sliding when steering sharply – as I say it’s down to the driver not to go so fast that control is lost through speed. Having a legal tread does not avoid collisions.

    Hugh Jones
    Agree (3) | Disagree (4)

    I have a couple of spare cheapo tyre gauges to hand out for this specific purpose.

    An ex-colleague who was commuting 140 miles(!!) miles a day in total managed to wear his tyres down to an average of 0.6mm across all four corners – his thoughts were that as long as the tread was visible, you’re okay.

    It’s a good thing it was a dry summer a couple of years back!

    David Weston, Corby
    Agree (2) | Disagree (0)

    Tyres in perfect condition don’t necessarily prevent collisions and tyres in poor condition don’t necessarily cause them either – as ever, it’s the driver’s responsibility.

    Hugh Jones, Cheshire
    Agree (6) | Disagree (0)

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