Dangerous tyres causing concern

Almost 40% of cars in the UK are running on at least one tyre that is ‘dangerously’ or ‘very dangerously’ under-inflated.

The figures come after Michelin and Kwik Fit inspected more than 500 vehicles in Tesco car parks around the UK.

Michelin classifies tyres that are between 7psi and 14psi below the manufacturer’s recommendation as ‘dangerously underinflated’, while 14psi or more under-inflation is deemed to be ‘very dangerous’.

Michelin and Kwik Fit technicians found 27.56% of cars had at least one dangerous tyre, with 12.01% having at least one very dangerous tyre.

Jamie McWhir, technical manager for Michelin in the UK, said, ‘Driving around on underinflated tyres costs money and it can cost lives.

‘We wanted to team up with Kwik Fit to encourage motorists to check their tyre pressures regularly. It makes sense from a cost and environmental point of view, but more importantly it’s critical for the safety of the vehicle, its passengers, other road users and pedestrians.’

Running a car with tyres under-inflated by 7psi decreases fuel efficiency by about one mile per gallon. Michelin estimates that under-inflated tyres could be costing motorists in a city the size of Manchester more than £2m a year in unnecessary fuel consumption – as well as pumping thousands of tonnes of additional CO2 into the atmosphere.