By Denna Bowman
Overloading vans and light goods vehicles can inflate fuel and running costs and increase the chance of accidents, according to TyreSafe, the UK’s leading tyres safety organisation.
The warning comes after the latest VOSA effectiveness report showed that the LGV overloading prohibition rate by traffic enforcers increased from 66.9 percent in 2008/09 to 72.7 percent in 2009/10.
Operators must compensate for carrying heavy loads by increasing their tyre pressures to the recommended levels, otherwise their tyres will wear out quicker, their fuel consumption will increase and their safety may be compromised, TyreSafe warned.
Stuart Jackson, chairman of the group, said: “Overloading in itself is a serious safety hazard which operators must address, but even if they are carrying legal loads, they should ensure their tyres are adjusted and inflated to the correct pressure.
“If tyres do not contain enough air for the load being carried, they are much more likely to experience a rapid deflation which can result in a terrifying accident. There are also other significant downsides such as longer stopping distances, reduced stability, increased tyre wear and higher fuel consumption.”