Get a grip and check your tyres.
That is the message to motorists from the Road Safety Authority and the Irish Tyre Industry Association, on Tyre Safety Day today.
Sam Waide, Chief Executive of the RSA, said: “There is no component on your vehicle more likely to contribute to a crash than your tyres.
"They are your only contact with the road and if they are not fit for purpose, everything else is secondary. Based on the analysis of road collision reports we estimate that defective tyres could be a contributory factor in as many as 14 deaths each year. But people don’t often think about their tyres – are they inflated correctly, are they below the minimum tread depth, are they damaged in any way?"
He added: “Each month 8,500 vehicles are classified as being dangerously defective for ‘Tyre Tread’ and ‘Tyre Condition’ across the NCT and CVRT testing systems. Don’t wait for your NCT to check if your tyres are roadworthy. Do a regular walk-around of your car and check your tyres - look for cuts, cracks, or bulges. If you are unsure or don’t know anything about tyres get them checked by a local ITIA-registered dealer regularly.”
Assistant Commissioner Paula Hilman, National Roads Policing Bureau, An Garda Síochána, said: “Defective tyres are a serious risk to all road users. Gardaí encounter many tragedies on Irish roads and have to deal with people who have suffered serious life changing injuries.
"Many of these can be avoided if your vehicle is roadworthy and you drive within the speed limit. Have your tyres checked regularly, reduce your speed and together we can make the roads safer. Members of the Roads Policing Units across the country will be mounting roadside checks in conjunction with Road Safety Authority Vehicle Inspectors checking tyres on vehicles at the roadside on Tyre Safety Day, 7 October 2020. If you are found to be driving a vehicle with defective tyres you could face up to 4 penalty points if convicted and a fixed penalty of up to €120.”
The minimum tread depth of car tyres is 1.6mm, while it is 1mm on a motorcycle.