Winter tyres are not snow tyres, warns GEM

9th November 2011

UK motorists have been warned not to confuse winter tyres with snow compounds in the run-up to big freeze.

Independent road safety association GEM Motoring Assist has praised the benefits of using winter tyres in cold weather but claimed that drivers can still run into difficulty on icy and snow-filled roads.

David Williams, GEM's chief executive, revealed that winter tyres are most efficient in temperatures below eight degrees Celsius as the rubber and silicon compounds in normal tyres stiffen up to reduce their resilience.

He said: "In such temperatures, winter tyres will significantly reduce stopping distances and offer more feedback to the driver's fingers. However, when slush, ice and snow are on the roads, motorists must remain as cautious as ever."

Mr Williams added that motorists should leave "much more space" between the car in front to allow more time to brake, while they should also slow down to help prevent serious accidents this winter. 

Posted by Danielle Barge