Heatwave brings potential tyre problems for fleet drivers
When tyres are under-inflated, excessive heat builds up which makes them much more susceptible to rapid deflation. This can make a car extremely difficult to control, especially as deflation occurs most frequently after prolonged periods of high speed running on busy motorways or A-roads.
Under-inflation, as well as being a safety issue from an increased risk of tyre failures and punctures, can also be financially costly because of a reduced tyre life and increased fuel consumption as the engine has to work harder to make the tyre turn.
Underlining the scale of the risk and dangers, figures from the RAC show that last year, its patrol crews attended more than 50,000 tyre related call-outs in July and August alone.
TyreSafe advises that when checking their tyre pressures, drivers should ensure they are correctly inflated for the load being carried, such as additional passengers or holiday luggage. The correct settings can be found in the vehicle manufacturer’s handbook, inside the fuel filler cap or on a plate on the driver’s door sill. Alternatively, TyreSafe has developed an on-line and iPhone app that allows users to enter their car registration number plate for the correct tyre pressure. It’s available to use and download by visiting www.tyresafe.org.
RAC spokesman, Simon Williams, commented: ‘In 2012 RAC patrols attended 344,000 call-outs for tyre and wheel jobs, making it our second biggest breakdown with 15% of our 2.3 million breakdowns. We urge everyone taking to the roads this summer to make sure their tyres are in good condition otherwise they risk spending some unwanted time on the hard shoulder or in a lay-by instead of on the beach.'