Motorists warned about buying used tyres

Tyres with exposed cords or other defects risk causing a driver to be unable to accelerate, steer and brake properly.

- Advertisement -

Motorists could be putting lives at risk buying dangerous second-hand tyres, councils have warned.

Part-worn tyres are being sold with serious safety defects, unsafe repairs and incorrect labelling, the Local Government Association (LGA) said.

The organisation which represents councils in England and Wales urged drivers buying second-hand tyres to check they are in good condition and have the required “part-worn” marking.

Tyre defects contribute to road deaths

Department for Transport figures show 17 people were killed and a further 147 were seriously injured during 2017 in accidents on Britain’s roads in which a tyre defect was a contributory factor.

An investigation carried out by 10 councils across Yorkshire and the Humber found that nearly half (45%) of 29 used tyres examined were unsafe.

A prosecution by the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham resulted in a tyre business and company director being ordered to pay £2,712 for selling a customer an unsafe second-hand tyre which had a nail embedded in it.

Tyres with exposed cords – due to being worn down too much – also risk causing a driver to be unable to accelerate, steer and brake properly.

A pile of used tyres showing various levels of wear

Cheap used tyres may be illegal and unsafe

Simon Blackburn, chairman of the LGA’s Safer and Stronger Communities Board, said: “Dangerous part-worn tyres are putting motorists’ lives at risk and blatant, inexcusable breaches of the law are happening with shocking prevalence in some areas.

“Cheap used tyres might be tempting to buy but if they don’t have the correct legal markings, motorists could unknowingly buy illegal tyres which could contribute to a major accident.

“Motorists buying used tyres should go to a reputable trader and check they have ‘part-worn’ stamped on them as without this mark, they are unlikely to have been checked and the retailer is breaking the law.

“They should also look out for any cracks, tears, lumps and check the state of the thread before buying.”

RAC patrol of the year Ben Aldous said: “It doesn’t matter how new or well-maintained the rest of a car is, if its tyres are in poor condition drivers leave themselves open to losing grip on the road, and all the horrible consequences that could bring.

“Every year we attend hundreds of thousands of breakdowns where drivers’ tyres have failed them. While these might sometimes be unavoidable, such as after hitting a pothole, there are far too many times when breakdowns are caused by tyres that are badly worn.

“We strongly advise drivers to check the tread and pressure of their tyres at least once a fortnight, and before any long journey, to ensure they are in tip-top condition.”

- Advertisement -
Stuart Masson
Stuart Massonhttps://www.thecarexpert.co.uk/
Stuart is the Editorial Director of our suite of sites: The Car Expert, The Van Expert and The Truck Expert. Originally from Australia, Stuart has had a passion for cars and the automotive industry for over thirty years. He spent a decade in automotive retail, and now works tirelessly to help car buyers by providing independent and impartial advice.

Latest Expert Advice

Could you be invalidating your car insurance?

If you don't give your insurer the correct information about you, your car and your driving situation, your car insurance may not be valid.

Different types of gearbox explained

Do you find the different types of gearbox all a bit confusing? What's a DCT, or a CVT, or a DSG? The Car Expert is here to help.

Latest Expert Ratings

Honda e

The Honda e electric city car has been praised for its retro-futuristic styling and technology, but criticised for poor battery range.

Hyundai Ioniq Electric

The Hyundai Ioniq Electric has received generally good reviews, with the updated 2019 model being a useful improvement on the 2016 original.

Mercedes-Benz A-Class gets new top-spec trim level

The Mercedes-Benz A-Class is now available with a new top-spec Exclusive Edition trim level that comes highly specified.

All-new Hyundai i20 pricing and specifications confirmed

Hyundai has confirmed that the new i20 will cost from £18,595 and boast a new top-level trim called Ultimate.

Covid pandemic is changing our car buying plans

New research suggests up to 14 million UK car owners have changed their minds about their next car purchase as a result of Covid-19.

Britain’s best-selling cars, September 2020

The Vauxhall Corsa roared back to the top of the sales charts in September, while the Ford Focus dropped way down the order.

More from The Car Expert

Expert Advice

Award-winning, independent and impartial advice on buying, financing, owning and running a car

Expert Ratings

We analyse and aggregate dozens of media reviews for each new car into an overall Expert Rating

Expert News

All the most important new car launches, model updates, car reviews and industry news

Expert Partners

Our new space for commercial partners to bring you special offers on their products and services

What are your thoughts? Let us know below.