Drivers ignorant of tyre safety

* Many drivers never check their tyres * 70% didn't know minimum tread depth * New website to help motorists...

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What Car? Staff
25 March 2009

Drivers ignorant of tyre safety

Two out of five motorists claim never to have checked their tyres, according to a new survey.

The research, commissioned by Continental Tyres, also found:

  • One third of drivers didn't know how to check tread depth or tyre pressure

  • 70% didn't know the minimum legal tread depth

  • 20% thought they were driving on tyres with below the minimum tread depth

It's recommended that you check your tyres' pressure once a week, as properly inflated tyres help to improve fuel economy and reduce CO2 emissions.

The minimum legal tread depth is 1.6mm, but a tyre's effectiveness drops significantly when this falls below 3mm.

Continental says that when braking from 70mph in wet weather, a car with 1.6mm of tyre tread will still be travelling when the same car with 3mm of tread will have already stopped.

The company has launched a new website - where it offers advice on how to carry out simple checks on your tyres.