TYRE PRESSURE MONITORING SYSTEMS DO NOT REPLACE BASIC TYRE CHECKS, SAYS MICHELIN
Stoke-on-Trent – June 26, 2013
Michelin’s Head of Fleet Dave Crinson is issuing a warning to drivers against becoming complacent with tyre pressures following the introduction of Tyre Pressure Monitoring Systems (TPMS).
The electronic safety device, which became mandatory on all newly homologated cars in November 2012, monitors the pressure inside a tyre and alerts drivers when pressures fall below a certain level - typically 20 per cent under-inflated.
Michelin welcomes the new European legislation concerning the device which has been introduced to help improve road safety and reduce CO2 emissions, but Crinson is keen to highlight that TPMS is not an alternative to regular tyre checks.
Crinson said: “TPMS is an excellent development for the motoring industry and the fact it is now a compulsory feature of all new cars is an extremely positive step. Any technology that helps reduce the number of motorists who drive on under-inflated tyres, and therefore reduces the number of accidents on the road, should be embraced by the industry.
“However, although TPMS is an excellent tool, there is the possibility it could encourage drivers to act only when the alarm is raised and not to carry out basic checks regularly, which are so important. TPMS will only detect a reduction in tyre pressure so it’s essential that drivers continue to regularly check tread depths and look for any damage, including penetrating objects such as nails and screws.
“We all have warning lights to show when our vehicle’s oil is low or to indicate there is a problem with the engine, but we still regularly check oil levels and have our vehicle serviced – it’s the same with tyre pressures and TPMS.”
Michelin advises that tyre pressures should be checked at least once a month and before long journeys, however results from its regular Fill Up With Air events indicate a high number of drivers are neglecting their tyres.
Tests on a total of 3,722 vehicles in 2012 revealed that 30 per cent of drivers had tyre pressures classed as ‘dangerous’ – between 8 and 14 psi under-inflated, and nine per cent of pressures were classed as ‘very dangerous’ – more than 14 psi below their vehicle’s recommended level. Only 28 per cent of vehicles tested were found to have the correct pressures as recommended by the vehicle manufacturer.
Although TPMS has been available since the 1980s, new regulations state that from November 2012 all newly homologated cars need TPMS as standard fitment, and in November 2014 TPMS will be required on all newly manufactured cars.
Michelin, the leading tyre company, is dedicated to sustainably improving the mobility of goods and people by manufacturing and marketing tyres for every type of vehicle including aircraft, bicycles/motorcycles, cars, earthmovers, farm equipment and trucks. It also offers electronic mobility support services on ViaMichelin.com and publishes travel guides, hotel & restaurant guides, maps and road atlases. Headquartered in Clermont-Ferrand, France, Michelin is present in more than 170 countries, has more than 113,000 employees and operates 69 production plants in 18 different countries. The Group has a Technology Centre dedicated to research, development and process engineering, with operations in Europe, North America and Asia. (www.michelin.com)
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