Police worry over tyre bursts
TWENTY people have died in accidents caused by tyre bursts in the last three months, police said yesterday.
They warned motorists against purchasing second hand tyres most of which are retreaded and sold as new.
National police spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba said the number of accidents caused by tyre bursts were worrying.
“The Zimbabwe Republic Police is concerned with road traffic accidents that have occurred as a result of tyre bursts. Recent statistics have established that six percent of fatal accidents which occurred from August 1 to October 31 were as a result of tyre bursts,” said Snr Asst Comm Charamba.
She said an accident in which 10 people died along the HarareBulawayo road on September 16 this year was caused by a burst left rear tyre at the 369km peg. “Another accident occurred on 24 September 2016 at the 44 kilometre peg along HarareNyamapanda road where a Toyota Hiace burst a tyre and killed six people in the process,” said Snr Asst Comm Charamba.
She said another accident which claimed four people on October 23 at the 143 kilometre peg along the Harare-Bulawayo road in Kadoma was caused by a burst rear left tyre and the car encroached into the left lane resulting in a head-on collision.
Snr Asst Comm Charamba cited overloading, speeding and poor road conditions as the chief causes of tyre bursts.
“If tyres are not used frequently they age quicker rendering them road unworthy. Worn out tyres should not be used at all,” she said.
Snr Asst Comm Charamba urged motorists to take note of tyres with expiry dates which must be adhered to.
“Tyre size, construction or type — the law requires that any tyre on any one axle of the vehicle should not be of a different size or type or construction. This implies that putting on a different tyre size is prohibited,” she said.
Other causes she cited were over and under inflation of tyres as well as adverse weather conditions which affect the efficiency of tyres.
Snr Asst Comm Charamba said tyres should be replaced by the same size designation recommended by the manufactures and that the tyre brand, size and threads must be the same on each axle.
“Motorists should guard against used tyre imports many of which are beyond retreading but are retreaded and sold illicitly.
Similarly, they must watch out for counterfeit tyres-illicit copies of respected brands,” she said. “They should always look for the SAZ stamp or other approved standards institutions.”
Snr Asst Comm Charamba encouraged motorists to check tyre pressure once a week or before undertaking a long journey and always use a reliable pressure gauge. “We are appealing to the motoring public to ensure that their vehicles are serviceable and roadworthy before they embark on their journeys.
Where possible, motorists should avoid travelling at night since poor visibility also contributes to road traffic accidents,” she said.