21 METRES ALL THE DIFFERENCE WHEN YOURE
TRYING TO STOP
November 2010: Real-time tyre testing by NRMA Motoring & Services has
found stopping distances in wet conditions when driving on worn tyres can increase
by an alarming 21 metres.
The testing was conducted as the NRMA launches Tyre Awareness Month throughout
November and Australians brace for a wet holiday season on the roads.
The testing was conducted at 80km/hr with a car using tyres with good tread and an identical
car travelling on worn tyres. The vehicle travelling on worn tyres required an additional four-to-
five car lengths to stop.
Throughout the month of November NRMA roadside patrols will conduct free visual checks on
call outs and NRMAs MotorServe Car Service Centres will provide free tyre checks.
The tyre testing coincides with a new survey of 1,100 motorists in NSW and the ACT, which
found more than two-thirds of drivers aged 18-34 were unable to check tyre wear. By
contrast, 85 per cent of drivers aged over 45 were far more confident at checking tyres.
NRMA Motoring & Services President Wendy Machin said predictions for one of the wettest
holiday seasons in years meant families needed to check they were driving on safe tyres.
The NRMA is concerned that there are many families driving on unsafe tyres and dont know
it, Ms Machin said.
As our testing showed, the extra stopping distance required in the wet on worn tyres is far
greater than most people would have realised and it can mean the difference between safety
and another unwanted holiday road statistic.
NRMAs Tyre Safety Month is designed to increase motorist awareness of the importance of
checking their vehicles tyres as families begin preparations for their Christmas holiday trips.
We are encouraging motorists to visit an NRMA Motorserve branch and have a free visual
check of their tyres. Our roadside patrols will also be conducting visual checks on call outs.
The NRMA survey also found that 20 per cent of motorists check their tyres just once every
six months. It is recommended that tyre pressures
be checked at least once a month and
every couple of days when driving long distances.
Industry studies have also found that 89 per cent of vehicles have one under inflated tyre.
The tests were conducted to give a real time view of the difference in braking and car handling
with different levels of tyre tread wear.
Worn tyres were tested in a roundabout situation in
wet conditions, the loss of control at 40km per hour was dramatic leading to fish tailing with
complete loss of control.
Note to editors and chiefs of staff: Footage from NRMAs tyre testing can be down-
Contact: Lisa Kable 0439 133 113