Part worn tyres are a potential accident waiting to happen according to Mark Harley, Retail Operations Director, at Micheldever Tyre Services. “Tyres removed from vehicles are usually taken off for a reason”, said Mark, “they may have hidden damage which is only likely to be revealed when the car is driven down the road. The reality” said Mark “is that they pose a real road safety danger, are not fit for purpose and in fact offer very poor value for money”.

According to a recent Auto Express survey, arranged in conjunction with TyreSafe, the cost per millimeter of a part worn versus a new tyre was getting on for twice as much.

Micheldever and its 63 Protyre branches have instigated a policy of disabling all tyres removed from cars and vans. This is achieved by drilling two holes in the sidewall of the tyre thereby ensuring that they do not find their way back onto UK roads. The disabled tyres are then responsibly disposed of by the company according to the requirements set out under the Responsible Recycler Scheme.

“We do accept” says Mark Harley, “that some motorists opt for part worns as a means of saving money by purchasing from outlets that conform to the rules and label the tyres correctly. But there are many used tyre dealers that are totally ignoring the requirements under the legislation* which have been put in place to protect motorists and other road users. In addition to offering poor value for money”, continued Mark, “we believe that many are potentially dangerous with hidden damage. Using these tyres could put drivers and passengers at a safety risk. They also create an environmental problem.” said Mark, “with the vast majority of these tyres coming into the UK from Europe we then have the problem of disposing of these tyres. We are proud to put the safety of all road users at the forefront of our efforts”

The extent of the danger posed by these tyres was underlined last year by Birmingham Trading Standards. They found that alarmingly 90% of the tyres they examined failed to meet the minimum legal requirements.