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UK fleets neglect tyre safety during recession  16/04/2015

Further proof that individuals and businesses in the UK are neglecting their tyre safety as costs of motoring continue to rise and government cuts start to take hold came this week in the form of a report from the Freight transport Association.

The FTA are one of the biggest trade associations in the UK and represent rail, sea, air and road moving firms all over the UK. The team are known for their Vehicle Inspection Service, which helps firms keep their goods moving safely and has been in existence for nearly 50 years.

The association were moved by news of tyre neglect to launch their own investigation, and conducted research on over 6,000 in service heavy goods vehicles over an eight week period.

The results, which were broken down into four fortnight periods of time show a huge number of different defects. Of the 6,000 vehicles tested, over 1,000 were found to have problems, with 280 not having the right tread depth. A further 160 had tread cuts in at least one of their tyres, and 140 were found to have objects in their tread.

100 had a puncture or tyres that were underinflated and 90 had side wall damage. Amazingly 60 had tyre mismatches, with tread, direction or size not correctly matched against other tyres on the vehicle, causing both safety and economical problems for the vehicle.

Director of Vehicle Inspections at the FTA, Alan Osborne revealed, "Tyre care plays a huge part in a vehicle's road safety performance, for example under inflation will affect vehicle handling and braking performance while increasing fuel consumption and tyre wear. But tyre defects also give rise to other potential costs in terms of test failures, failed roadside checks, GFPs for the driver and, potentially, greater targeting by VOSA. Our VIS team has analysed thousands of customers' tyre data and clearly drivers and operators should be particularly mindful of the depth of their tyre tread, especially with winter weather being with us."