Saturday 17 March 2018

Motorists will face penalty points for faulty tyres from later this year

Car wheel and tyre
Car wheel and tyre
Eddie Cunningham

Eddie Cunningham

MOTORISTS are facing penalty points and fixed charges for faulty tyres later this year.

That is the pledge from Transport Minister Paschal Donohoe after he said he was shocked at new findings which found faulty tyres are contributing to far more accidents than was previously realised.

The results of new analysis of Garda forensic evidence investigations into fatalities have shocked those involved in road safety - with tyres a factor in 14 deaths a year.

The figures show that ‘vehicle factors’ - especially tyres - contribute far more to deaths and injuries on our roads than was believed to be the case.

Now the Road Safety Authority (RSA) is embarking on a campaign to highlight the dangers posed by tyres that are worn, damaged or under-inflated.

They were a significant vehicle factor in 66 vehicles between 2008 and 2012.

The results are based on a five-year analysis of Garda Forensic Collisions Investigations rather than the on-scene preliminary reports.

The research was unveiled today by Mr Donohoe. He promised there would be a penalty points and fixed-charge notice system for defective tyres “at a point later on in the year”.

But he hasn’t decided yet on how many points will be levied on offenders.

Penalty points for defective tyres are listed on original legislation but have not yet been enacted.

Mr Donohoe said he was “struck by just how big a factor tyres have been in accidents”.

He urged motorists to regularly check their vehicles to make sure they are roadworthy. “This report highlights just how important it is that every aspect of a vehicle is in proper roadworthy condition.”

Based on the study into 858 collisions the blunt verdict is that no other component in your car is as likely to contribute to a crash as your tyres.

RSA chief executive Moyagh Murdock said today: “This report shows that tyres are the parts of your car that are most likely to put you at risk of a fatal collision if they’re not roadworthy.”

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