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Snow tyres are not for Jamaican roads, ministry warns

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

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THE Ministry of Transport and Mining yesterday urged motorists and motor vehicle dealers to beware of the use of snow (winter) tyres on Jamaican roads.

According to a ministry release, a number of unsuspecting consumers purchased used vehicles fitted with snow tyres not knowing of the dangers they may face. It said that under no circumstance should vehicles fitted with winter tyres be certified fit for Jamaican roads.

“Winter tyres are designed for cold temperatures and winter conditions. Once the temperature rises, these tyres lose its integrity and make it difficult for drivers to maintain control over their vehicles on hot asphalt and when it rains. These tyres are less effective at dissipating heat, therefore the risks of over-inflating and blowouts are much higher,” the ministry said.

“There are a number of features consumers can look out for to identify snow tyres. These include traction with deeper grooves, and sharp, irregular edges. Snow tyres are much noisier than all-season tyres,” said the release.

It added: “Driving on snow tyres in Jamaica increases the braking distance by at least 10 per cent on dry pavement and 26 per cent on wet pavement. They wear out much faster than their expected tread life when they run on hot pavement. Since snow tyres are made with a softer compound, they will also tend to wear unevenly when driven in the wrong conditions. This creates more rolling resistance and uses more gas and affects vehicle control.”


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