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New rule to ensure safer winter tyre use

Hon Steven Joyce
Minister of Transport

27 October 2009 Media Statement

New rule to ensure safer winter tyre use

Transport Minister Steven Joyce has signed a new rule setting safety standards for winter tyres.

“The mixing of winter or snow tyres with other tyre types has contributed to several fatal crashes.

“Coroners’ reports have identified at least four deaths on our roads since January 2007 where the combination of winter and conventional tyres was a contributing factor. This Rule will help reduce the risk of further deaths and injuries by prohibiting the mixing of these tyres,” says Mr Joyce.

Research has found that mixing winter and conventional tyres can make a vehicle difficult to control in wet conditions and during hard braking. The Rule also specifies a greater minimum tread depth for winter tyres to further ensure safety.

“Winter tyres have safety benefits but they can be dangerous if used incorrectly. I urge New Zealanders to exercise caution when using them.”

Winter tyres are usually marked with a snowflake or mountain symbol and/or the word ‘studless’. The Tyres and Wheels Amendment Rule comes into force on 1 April 2010.


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