In June this year (2019) the Government opened a consultation on whether using tyres over 10 years old should be banned on commercial vehicles, which are defined as;

  • Heavy goods vehicles
  • Heavy trailers
  • Buses, coaches and minibuses

Why ban 10-year-old tyres?

In the summer of 2012, Michael Malloy, 18 was killed in a road traffic accident. An inquest found that the tyres on the coach in which he was travelling were nearly 20 years old and this was the cause of the accident. Two others, including the driver also lost their lives.

Five years later in June 2017, Michael’s mother launched a campaign to ban aged tyres. She had campaigned for seven years by the time the government opened the public consultation in June this year.

The consultation closed on 1st September 2019, but we have yet to hear any update. However, what we can share from Department for Transport’s Banning Tyres Aged 10 Years and Older Consultation Document is,

‘We propose an implementation period of 3 months from the date of any legislation taking effect before any ban comes into force to allow drivers, operators and businesses time to review their fleet, stock and change any tyres if required. Given that the rationale for this legislation is improving road safety we want to ensure that compliance with the requirement is achieved as quickly as possible. Our assessment is based on existing evidence that the proportion of affected vehicles will be low, that we are building on existing roadworthiness guidance and that tyres are a consumable item that can be readily changed within a short timeframe.’

Castle’s views on 10-year-old tyres

Castle Minibus wholeheartedly support the proposal to ban tyres over 10 years old. We understand how traffic accidents can shape the future of road safety and believe that the Malloy campaign gives good cause for the Government’s proposal. As champions of minibus safety, any proposal that raises the standards of safety for road users and in particular, school minibus drivers and their student passengers, deserves full consideration.

We educate on safety and compliance within existing laws for minibus safety, using the Guide to Maintaining Roadworthiness and the Section 19 Permit regulations as reference. We have been sharing the importance of minibus safety inspections since conception of our minibus leasing service in 1995 and continue to campaign for the implementation of minibus safety systems in schools through our Minibus Compliance Course.

We hope to hear positive results from the 10-year-old tyre consultation and news of implementation before the end of the year.

You can read the Government’s full proposal document from the link referenced above, or stay informed with up to date news from Traffic Commissioner bulletins.