Van drivers are being warned to ensure they are using legally acceptable tyres after a well known tyre safety campaigning group found many tyres are being sold illegally and are unsafe.
The warning comes after the TyreSafe Group conducted a nationwide purchase of part worn tyres and the results were astounding. The investigators bought tyres from 50 different sources across the UK and found that 98% of the tyres were being sold illegally. It is not illegal to sell part worn tyres and many drivers, some running their own business, believe they can cut costs by purchasing “newly new” tyres. However, the rules surrounding the sale of the tyres are stringent and the research suggests that many drivers may be motoring on tyres that are unsafe and would probably render their van insurance invalid if they had an accident.
Even more worrying was that the investigation showed almost 40% of the tyres were non compliant with safety rules. The team found evidence of exposed cords, unsafe repairs, bead damage and runflat damage.
Stuart Jackson, Chairman of TyreSafe said: “Not only are drivers putting their own lives at risk, but they are also endangering their passengers, which in many cases may be their children, and other road users. Before buying part worn tyres I would urge drivers to ask themselves if the risk of buying part worn tyres is really worth it. Although a number of clear regulations exist which permit the sale of part worn tyres, it’s obvious from our investigation that these are not being adhered to. Even if properly marked, it is impossible to know the history of a part worn tyre which makes it extremely difficult to be sure about its internal condition and safety credentials.”
In fact, tests by TyreSafe showed that in most cases new tyres were better value for money and they advocate motorists should opt for what they consider the safest option if their purse allows them to.