With 5,375 UK motorists killed or injured in the past five years due to illegal, defective or under-inflated tyres, the National Tyre Distributors’ Association (NTDA) is calling for a new quality mark and accreditation scheme for part-worn tyres.
Independent research conducted on behalf of the NTDA for its manifesto Raising Standards and Improving Safety in the UK Tyre Industry, launched in October, showed that almost 90% of motorists believe a safety-approved mark on part-worn tyres to show they meet legal requirements was a good idea and could make the market a safer place. Research into attitudes of NTDA members showed that 95% believe the part-worn tyre market should be regulated and nine out of 10 respondents stated companies selling part-worn tyres should be independently assessed.
While the NTDA would like to see an outright ban on the sale of part-worn tyres, it believes a quality mark, supported with an industry backed third party certification scheme, such as that being proposed by the Tyre Recovery Association, would introduce an element of control and policing which the industry currently does not have while a quality mark would make the market safer for motorists, unlike the current part-worn mark which is generic and open to abuse.
“It is the opinion of the NTDA that the part-worn tyre situation is now out of control,” says Stefan Hay, NTDA chief executive. “ There are too many part-worn tyre dealers consistently ignoring the regulations and selling tyres that have not been tested under inflation or thoroughly inspected for damage which poses a risk to public safety. While the NTDA ultimate aim is and will remain a total ban on the sale of part-worn tyres, for now a part-worn tyre accreditation mark would make the market safer, allowing only dealers that have been independently inspected, audited and awarded the relevant third party certification to legally sell part-worn tyres.”