CARAVAN TYRE TERROR
CARAVANS CAN literally become a 'pain in the backside' on busy motorways.
It's a view purported to be held by many truck drivers - but it becomes all too true when old, damaged or ill-maintained tyres are factored in to the mix on, say, Europe's busiest motorway, the M25 London orbital.
Even the most fastidious driver can forget the caravan tyres before setting off on a long holiday haul. That could prove fatal.
"Caravan tyres need the same care and attention as those on cars. Just because they do much less mileage doesn't mean that they don't age or suffer damage," said Ken Mann at mytyres.co.uk. "A blow-out on a caravan, particularly a single axle model, can cause loss of control of the towing vehicle. In some cases, the A-frame towing linkage can overturn even a heavy car, with a high risk of injury or even death. It pays to ensure that both caravan and tow vehicle tyres are in tip-top condition - we'll even tell you how!"
Follow this simple checklist to help guard against avoidable accidents caused through tyre failure:
- When laying-up or storing the caravan for longer periods, make sure the recommended tyre pressures are kept, rotate the wheels weekly to avoid flat spots developing and make sure the tyres aren't constantly subjected to the sun's rays - which accelerates the ageing process.
- Better still, take the wheels and tyres off and store them in a cool, dry place.
- Check the sidewalls for cuts and bulges which may indicate damage with potential to cause a blow-out.
- Tyres with crazed sidewalls are probably too old and should be replaced - it will cost less at mytyres.co.uk.
- Tyres below legal tread depths need to be replaced before use on a public road.
- The towing vehicle tyres should be in good condition and legal. We recommend a minimum depth of 3mm. Of course, set them to the pressure recommendation appropriate to a loaded or towing condition: the vehicle handbook should give this information, sometimes known as forecourt data. Otherwise, contact mytyres.co.uk for advice.