DO UK DRIVERS UNDERSTAND TYRE SAFETY STANDARDS? HALFORDS DATA SUGGESTS ‘NO’

Halfords’ Tyre Safety video game, 20,000 Miles in Two Minutes, launched in October for tyre safety month, was aimed to test driver’s knowledge and raise awareness around tyre safety standards. As of today, the game has been played over 7,000 times, revealing:

  • 96% of players drove with low tyre pressure
  • 60% of players drove with tread depth below the legal limit
  • 78% of players were pulled over by the virtual police
  • Drivers underspent on tyres by £83 on average

The data shows a clear knowledge gap, with 96% of game plays (6699) seeing the car driven with tyre pressure below the legal safe limit. The average player drove with low tyre pressure for 18 seconds, proving to be the biggest contributing factor to game losses.

Additionally, 60% (2615) of players drove with low tyre tread depth. This is extremely dangerous and would be a breach of UK law, where an average PSI should be between 30-35 and tread depth should be 8-9MM. The real-life consequences of low tread can involve losing control on the road.

Within the game, the virtual police pulled over 78% of players due to them driving below legal safe limits. Could this apparent lack of understanding around tyre safety standards translate into how tyres are used on UK roads?

There’s a question of why such a big knowledge gap exists. Are drivers simply choosing to ignore the dangers of having faulty tyres, or do they simply not know the numbers? Halfords’ findings reveal that the average user spent only £67 on tyre repairs, while experts estimate a reasonable spend to be £150 – meaning drivers could be underspending by £83 on average.

What, then, are the wider issues revealed by the game data? Could a lack of tyre safety knowledge pose a genuine threat on the real roads? Are UK drivers reluctant to spend money on their faulty car tyres?

Halfords Mobile Expert Operations Director, Karl Baker, says:

“It’s crucial for drivers to maintain safe levels of tyre tread and pressure all year round for both their own safety, and the safety of other road users. Our game data suggests not all drivers may be aware of what those safe legal limits are.

While this does not directly translate into real world road data, our simulation suggests a lack of tyre safety knowledge and unwillingness to spend money on faulty tyres could pose a threat to road safety.”

If customers spot an issue with their own car tyres, they can get in touch with the Halfords Mobile Expert team to resolve the issue from the comfort of their own home.