Drivers in the UK are playing Russian roulette with their lives, according to traffic officers in the north-east.
The Cleveland Road Safety Partnership has launched a new campaign complete with the slogan "a two-minute check prevents a wreck", indicating that drivers only need to spend a short period of time maintaining and checking their tyres.
Traffic officers will be carrying out checks on the tyre tread depth and pressure of over 1,000 vehicles in car parks across the region.
Drivers will be left with an information leaflet including the grading of their tyres and a tread buddy so they can check their own tread in the future. Parents are also being urged to check the safety of tyres on their child’s car.
Officials believe that monitoring tyres, lights, fluid levels, windscreen wiper blades and windscreen washer fluids, can help prevent a collision.
The launch of the campaign comes after figures from the Department for Transport revealed that the number of people killed or seriously injured on the roads in the north-east increased in 2012, when compared with 2011.
This data, combined with recent figures published in a TyreSafe and ingenie report, which revealed that more than a third of drivers aged 18-25 have never taken the time to check their tread depth and a quarter of respondents confessed that they never check tyre pressures, indicates how important the campaign is.
Inspector Lee Rukin from the Cleveland and Durham Specialist Operations Unit said: "The ultimate consequence of unroadworthy tyres would be a fatal collision. Drivers shouldn’t underestimate the importance of tyre safety as they are the only thing between the car and the road.
"Those who fail to regularly check their tyres are playing Russian Roulette with their lives."
He went on to explain that not checking the tyres on a vehicle puts a number of people's lives at risk, including passengers, cyclists and pedestrians.
Posted by Danielle Barge