“With another Tyre Check Survey still set to take place in Cape Town this year, we have set a new annual record of 5 812 tyres surveyed,” said Bridgestone public relations manager Mandy Lovell. “This beats the previous record of 5788 which has stood since 2008,” she explained. “We’re expecting to push this up by at least another 1000 tyres in Cape Town, making 2013 the benchmark year for the Tyre Check programme.”
Durban’s contribution to the cause amounted to 1 164 tyres on 291 vehicles. All these tyres were checked for inflation pressure, condition and treadwear by a team of Bridgestone tyre specialists. The team was also looking for mis-matched tyres and found that 19% of vehicles had more than one tyre make fitted, with many vehicles having three to four different makes fitted. When tyres of different makes or tread patterns are mixed on the same vehicle, it can lead to unpredictable roadholding, especially if they are mixed on the same axle. “Try to fit a matched pair to a single axle to minimise negative effects on roadholding,” Lovell advised.
Inflation pressures were benchmarked as fine (between 1.8 and 2.9 bar), dangerous (1.5 to 1.7 bar) and extremely dangerous (below 1.5 bar or above 2.9 bar). 91% of tyres surveyed were rated ‘fine’, putting Durban’s drivers in second place for 2013 behind the 98% achieved by Centurion’s drivers earlier in the year.
With 5% of tyres rated ‘dangerous’, the Durbanites could only manage joint third place for 2013, but they did slightly better when it came to tyres rated ‘extremely dangerous’: 4% of the tyres surveyed fell into this category, putting Durban in joint second place for the year.
And there is more good news: just 3% of the tyres surveyed were damaged or worn so badly that they were in need of replacement. This put Durban in joint first place with Centurion in this category for 2013.
“We’re pleased with the successes we saw in the Durban Tyre Check, but we’re still worried about that high mis-match rate of 19%. We appeal to motorists to ensure that their cars’ roadholding and braking is not compromised by mixing tyres of different makes or tread patterns,” said Lovell.