Motorists with defective tyres still at high level
Making sure a car is roadworthy is of paramount importance to motorists across the UK, but new figures have shown that many are still driving around on unsafe or defective tyres.
Published by the Ministry of Justice, statistics revealed that the number of people that were successfully convicted of having illegal tyres in England and Wales had reached 9,639 in 2011. Officials said that the state of a car's tyres can have a significant detrimental affect on how well it drives, and could also prove highly dangerous to pedestrians, the motorist themselves and other road users. The figures are now still at a "worrying level" according to campaign group TyreSafe.
The organisation stated that these official figures were probably higher than the results suggest as they do not take into account the amount of vehicles that are stopped by police on the roadside. Officials also noted their shock that illegal tyres took up two-thirds of the most common defects with cars in the UK, overshadowing problems likes brakes and steering components.
Stuart Jackson, chairman of TyreSafe, said: "Tyres play a vital role in road safety so these latest figures are very worrying. Not only is there still a high level of ignorance about tyre care, but perhaps even more alarming is that many motorists continue to drive on tyres that they know are illegal or dangerous."
In the UK, the legal minimum amount of tread a motorist can have on their tyres is 1.6 millimetres and the organisation has said that drivers can easily check whether they need changing or not by simply using a 20p piece. When pressed in the grooves of the tyre, if the outer ridge of the coin is completely covered then there is a legal amount of tread. However, if the rim can be seen then motorists should consult a professional immediately to arrange a service to fix the problem.
It is hoped that if people follow this simple guideline than the amount of casulties related to defective tyres will drop below the current 1,200 figure.
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