In these tough economic times, many are choosing to buy part-worn tyres when they need replacements. But a recent investigation by www.tyresafe.org found that only one tyre out of the 50 tested came up to standard.
The organisation said that each year in the UK, illegal, defective or under-inflated tyres contribute to more than 1,200 road casualties.
It is highlighting the “hidden dangers” of part-worn tyres.
Only one of the tyres it tested was sold legally — correctly marked as
part-worn and with adequate depth of tread.
One tyre sold was labelled “potentially lethal”, as a piece of metal was wearing away the inside, said Tyresafe.
Research by insurance company NFU Mutual has found that 54% of horsebox and trailer breakdowns are related to problems with tyres.
“Old, damaged, worn or incorrectly inflated tyres will fail at some point,” said Nicki Whittaker of NFU Mutual.
“At best this will result in a breakdown and at worst tyre failure can lead to
“People will often fit car tyres on their trailers to save money, without realising that they are not designed to carry the weight of the horses.
“Damaged, perished and incorrectly inflated tyres can lead to blow-outs, which can leave the driver of the vehicle struggling to regain control.”
As part of NFU Mutual’s 2013 safety campaign, the company is encouraging owners to check their tyres regularly and “retire” them where necessary.
Owners are urged to check the pressure, tread and condition of their tyres to stay safe and legal. On a vehicle up to 3.5tonne the minimum legal depth is 1.6mm, for horseboxes above this weight is it 1mm.
This news story was first published in the current issue of H&H (29 November 2012)