The summer holidays are finally here! And to make sure they are both fun and safe for everyone, Bridgestone – the number one tyre and rubber manufacturer in the world – offers motorists a few tips and tricks on tyre safety to get them safely on their way. Keeping your tyres in good condition and at the correct pressure is essential to your safety, especially on long trips. Sadly, Bridgestone tyre safety checks reveal that as many as 78% of vehicles in Europe may be driving on unsafe tyres(1). The good thing is, however, that checking your tyres is easy and just takes a couple of minutes of your time.
Tyre Safety: As easy as 1, 2, 3
Your tyres are your first line of defence against potentially dangerous situations on the road. To keep you and your passengers safe, it is essential to keep them in top condition. Make sure you pay special attention as well to caravan, camper and trailer tyres, especially if they have not been used for a while.
1. Check your tread depth.
Hope for sun but prepare for rain is Bridgestone’s mantra. Ensuring your tyres have sufficient tread depth is essential to driving with confidence in wet weather. Check your tread with a depth gauge or look for the tread depth indicators inside your tread. Remember that the legal minimum tread depth is of 1.6mm and there should always be a margin between the indicator and the outside of your tyre. If they are level, it is time to replace your tyres, especially before a long drive!
Insufficient tread-depth will significantly increase your stopping distances in the wet! It also increases the risk of aquaplaning which becomes dangerous, notably if you get caught in unexpected summer rain!
2. Check your tyre pressure.
Your tyres are as essential to your safety on the roads as air tanks are for scuba divers underwater. You would not dive without checking your air pressure. The same goes for your tyres. Check your inflation pressure when your tyres are cold. And remember that the correct tyre pressure will usually be different for a fully loaded car. We also recommend to check your tyres in cold condition as warm air expands and can give an inaccurate pressure.
Under-inflated tyres will compromise your ability to brake and manoeuvre safely. They also consume more fuel and wear out much faster.
Where to find the right information for your vehicle? In your car booklet, door pillar or fuel valve you will have indicated the right inflation pressure. And if in doubt, consult a specialist!
3. Check for damage or wear.
Cuts, scuffs, abrasions and other forms of damage can easily get worse over a long journey. If in doubt, check with a specialist before taking the risk.
Worn or damaged tyres are prone to blowing out while driving, potentially causing you to lose control of your vehicle(1).
Working to improve road safety
Bridgestone is deeply committed to improving road safety in Europe. In fact, Bridgestone has been conducting free tyre safety checks around Europe for several years now in an effort to raise awareness for the importance of tyre safety. The combined results of those tests, however, reveal some alarming statistics. For instance, the 78% of vehicles on unsafe tyres include over 28% of motorists drive on tyres that are either significantly underinflated or worn beyond the legal limit, posing a serious safety risk. This is why Bridgestone urges motorists to check their tyres before leaving on holiday and before returning home. So you can enjoy the ride – and your holiday – with total peace of mind.
And if you are still driving on winter tyres, make sure you switch as soon as you can – especially before leaving on holidays – seeing as driving on winter tyres in summer conditions can increase your braking distance up to 30% compared to a summer tyre!(2)
For more holiday tyre safety tips, visit your local Bridgestone dealer or visit www.tyresafety.eu.
For other ideas and tips, visit www.bridgestone.co.uk/auto/your-journey/tyre-safety/
(1) For more information on Bridgestone’s tyre safety checks and impact of driving on unsafe tyres:
(2) For more information on summer vs winter tyres in summer conditions: