Next week is National Tire Safety Week.The Rubber Manufacturers Association, the national trade association for tire manufacturers that produce tires in the U.S., announced today a relaunch under the new banner of the U.S. Tire Manufacturers Association (USTMA).Two tire companies, Michelen and Toyoto made announcements.
Tire Driving Safety
Long daylight hours and better driving conditions may lull drivers into a false sense of safety during summer months, according to a new survey conducted by Michelin for National Tire Safety Week (May 28‒June 3). Two in three (67%) drivers report feeling safer driving during the summertime, citing better road conditions (83%) and nicer weather (81%) as reasons.
Despite drivers’ self-confidence, Memorial Day commences the most dangerous season of the year on the road, with more auto accidents occurring during summer months than any other time of year,1 according to NHTSA. More than 34.6 million Americans will hit the road this Memorial Day weekend, the traditional launch of the U.S. summer vacation season, according to AAA.
Three-quarters of drivers (74%) falsely believe that summer has fewer accidents than other times of the year. Similarly, drivers are three times less likely to be vigilant, (e.g., alert and focused on immediate surroundings) while driving during summer months than during winter.
Drivers report other differences in seasonal driving behaviors that suggest reduced vigilance during summer months:
- Eight in 10 drivers (81%) said they were less likely to drive cautiously (e.g., taking extra care with stopping, turning and attention to speed) in the summertime.
- Nearly three-quarters (72%) said they were less likely to pay close attention to other drivers on the road in the summer compared to winter months.
- Drivers are nearly three times less likely to check the condition of their tires in the summer.
“Drivers tend to think about their tires in the winter, when slippery, icy roads require maximum traction. But heat is the enemy of tires,” said Sarah Robinson, driving safety expert at Michelin. “Some of the most severe tire-related episodes are due to under-inflated tires in summer months.”
Michelin encourages all drivers to remain vigilant and safe on summer road trips with these summer driving tips:
- Give your car a checkup: Ahead of summer travel season, conduct a safety check of your vehicle to make sure it is in prime condition. Check oil and fluid levels, windshield wipers, headlights and battery ahead of your trip.
- Check your tires: Check to ensure your tires have sufficient tread with a simple penny test, and check your tire pressure using the manufacturer’s setting found on the driver’s door jamb. Underinflated tires offer less traction, can reduce fuel efficiency, wear out prematurely and, most importantly, suffer unnoticed and irreparable damage that compromises their performance and safety. Don’t forget to check the air in your spare, too.
- Practice safe following distance: Always be aware of the cars immediately surrounding you, especially those in front. Give yourself enough room to brake or maneuver in an unexpected situation.
- Focus fully on the road ahead: While on the road, focus fully on driving. Any activities that could divert your attention should be avoided while at the wheel. This includes things like using your phone, snacking, or reaching into the backseat to attend to a child or pet.
- Carry an emergency kit: Carry an appropriate emergency kit in your car that includes items such as jumper cables, flashlight with extra batteries, reflective triangles, first aid kit, water and non-perishable food items. Program your cell phone in advance with emergency numbers, including that of your roadside assistance provider.
- Take breaks during long trips: Pull over and take breaks every couple of hours, even if you don’t feel sleepy. Stretching your legs and taking a quick moment to “reset” can help avoid zoning out behind the wheel and keep passengers from getting cabin fever.
Toyo Tire Tips
Toyo Tire U.S.A.ecognizes National Tire Safety Week, running May 28 – June 3, 2017. Presented by the U.S. Tire Manufacturers Association (USTMA) and supported by industry partners such as Toyo Tires, National Tire Safety Week is designed to educate motorists about the importance of tire safety and proper maintenance.
sToyo Tires suggest that imply adding routine tire maintenance to your lifestyle – such as checking your tire pressures on a regular basis; can help save fuel costs while helping keep your vehicle safe on the road. During National Tire Safety Week, several Toyo Tires dealers offer free safety checks, including checking tire pressures and inspecting your tires for wear.
Underinflated tires produce more drag, requiring your engine to work harder. Underinflated tires decrease fuel efficiency and can produce harmful emissions. Properly inflated tires can improve gas mileage up to 3.3% annually and extend the life of your tires, according to U.S. Department of Energy.
With many scientists and engineers at work developing tomorrow’s tires, USTMA’s members unlock the value of a mobile society by producing advanced, high-quality tires that make driving easier, safer, smarter and more sustainable. USTMA, as the voice of the tire manufacturing industry and its members, works to drive a safer, more sustainable future.
For the do-it-yourselfer, you can easily locate your vehicle manufacturer’s recommended tire pressures on the tire placard. This can be found on the door and door jamb, glove box, trunk lid or fuel door. Toyo Tires also provides a convenient.