RSA expresses concern over driver attitudes to tyre safety

The Road Safety Authority (RSA) has expressed concern at driver attitudes to tyre safety, as a survey conducted by the Authority has revealed that 1 in 8 drivers (14%) have bought part-worn tyres in the past. The survey of 1,000 motorists, conducted in November 2014, also showed that motorists are not checking their tyres regularly, despite knowing how to do it.

8 out of 10 (79%) drivers stated that they know how to check the air pressure of their tyres, yet 1 in 10 check this less than once a year or not at all. Similarly, 1 in 8 drivers check the condition and tread depth of their tyres less than once a year or not at all, despite 72% of drivers knowing how to perform this important check.

Tyre safety, child safety and cycling safety are the focus of this year’s ‘Irish Road Safety Week’ which was launched today (Thursday 1 October) and will see a week of road safety activities taking place nationwide from Monday 5 October to Sunday 11 October. In support of Irish Road Safety Week, the Irish Tyre Industry Association (ITIA) members will be providing free tyre checks to motorists at participating garages during Road Safety Week and especially on National Tyre Safety Day on Wednesday 7 October. Details are available on

Speaking at the launch of ‘Irish Road Safety Week’, Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport Paschal Donohoe TD said:

“’Irish Road Safety Week’ is an important event in the road safety calendar as it gives us an opportunity to review our behaviour on the roads. If we all looked at how we use the roads every day, I have no doubt that we would find room for improvement. So this week, consider what small change you could make to make the roads safer for yourself and others. In particular, as the weather starts to get that bit colder, I would urge road-users to ensure they check their tyres regularly. Tyres are the only thing between you and the road, so it is critical that they are in good condition and that the tread depth and air pressure are checked regularly.”

The RSA is reminding road-users that roadworthy tyres must be the right type and size for the vehicle, be properly inflated, free from defects and have a tread depth of at least 1.6mm.

Chief Superintendent Mark Curran An Garda Síochána said:

“Tyres are the only part of your vehicle that separate you from the road so it is critical that they are in roadworthy condition at all times. We would encourage everyone to avail of the free tyre check next week and ensure they are up to standard, particularly as winter approaches.”

Ms Moyagh Murdock, Chief Executive of the Road Safety Authority said:

“We are concerned with the level of part worn tyres being used on vehicles, some are on sale for as little as 10 euro. When you consider that tyres are your only contact with the road, you really have to ask yourself is this the value you place on your family’s life?”

“The RSA are currently finalising a report, based on an analysis of forensic data that shows the quality of tyres plays a much bigger role in fatal collisions than previously thought. So it is really worrying that people are not prioritising safety when they purchase tyres. Your safety, along with the safety of your passengers and other road users, could depend directly on the condition of your vehicle’s tyres. If you drive with tyres in poor condition, you really are putting your life at risk. You may save a few euro in the short-term, but at what price? Get them checked and give yourself and your passengers the peace of mind that you’re travelling safely.” Moyagh added.

Mr Paddy Murphy, Acting President of the ITIA said: “It is important to keep our car and its tyres in top condition, yet many of us don’t make it a priority. As winter approaches and the weather starts to get worse, it really is critical that your tyres are in the best condition possible. If you are unsure what to do or how to check them a simple 5-minute visit to a local ITIA tyre outlet is all it takes to get your tyres checked for free to ensure they are safe. To find your local ITIA member visit

It’s important to remember safe tyres – saves lives.

‘Irish Road Safety Week’ will kick off on Monday 5 October with the Annual Road Safety Academic Lecture which will be held in the Royal College of Physicians. The focus of this year’s lecture is ‘Cycle Safety’ and research will be presented on helmet-wearing and the types of injuries that present as a result of a collision. ‘National Tyre Safety Day’ will take place on Wednesday 7 October with free tyre checks on offer in participating garages on this day and during the week. On Friday 9 October, Beep Beep Day, which focuses on road safety for pre-schoolers, will be taking place in crèches and pre-schools around the country.

The RSA will also be giving away 3,000 bicycle lights on their Facebook and Twitter pages throughout Irish Road Safety Week, while the road safety educational initiatives will be travelling the length and breadth of the country to teach children, students, parents and guardians about road safety.

Ms Moyagh Murdock, Chief Executive of the Road Safety Authority encouraged people to play their part in keeping our roads safe from death and injury

“To date this year, 119 people have died on our roads, 20 fewer than the same period last year. We can all play a role in keeping our roads safe by changing our behaviour for the better. Small changes can make a huge difference, for example, reducing your speed, making sure you and your passengers are safely restrained in the car, or keeping your vehicle, motorcycle or bicycle in roadworthy condition at all times. So this week, think about what you can do to be a better, safer driver and play your part in reducing deaths and serious injuries on our roads.”

A full list of activities taking place during ‘Irish Road Safety Week’ is available on You can get involved on social media by using the hashtag #IRSW2015

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