Should Winter Tyres Be Mandatory In The UK?

It’s surprising that the UK has been in the company of its European brethren for as long as it has without following their lead on the subject of winter tyres. There’s still a debate going on about the introduction of these tyres as a compulsory measure, but should they be mandatory?

Changing Winds

The weather is forever changing in the UK. In the past, the way it worked was that snow would only appear every few years and it was mainly just snow that disappeared after a few days after turning to wet grey slush. Global climate change has altered the longevity of the snow the UK receives, though. Now the UK is plagued by horrible summers (with infrequent visits from the sun) and chilly winters. Snow is now a fairly common occurrence during the rough winter months. And when it does snow it really does snow. The last few years have seen reports of airports closing down, roads blocked, and road grit shortages, as well as countless accidents.

That’s why winter tyres are something that the country really has to start considering, as it really does seem that climate change is only going to increase the contrast between the winter and the summer.

No Drive

Opponents to mandatory winter tyres have said that when the weather really does become unmanageable drivers just stay at home. Since heavy snowfall was relatively rare at one time this was a viable tactic, and not a lot of economical damage was done. If the snow begins to fall heavily on a regular basis during the winter months, though, then this can’t be done. So if drivers are forced to go to work, or wherever they need to go, then surely they have to be safe? If they aren’t using snow tyres then they are putting themselves, other drivers, and pedestrians at risk.

Going Further?

Winter tyres are only something that goes so far for protecting people from the hazards of icy roads and they can’t provide 100% protection. Other European nations also commonly use snow chains that fit around the wheels to provide extra traction, and to defend against sudden slips on things like black ice. According to the German Ministry Of Statistics, accidents and personal injuries have dropped by more than 50% since the introduction of compulsory winter tires back in 2008. Is this something that the UK should also be considering? With every harsh winter, the news reports on more deaths due to the icy conditions on the road, so how many need to sustain potentially life threatening injuries before some action needs to be taken?

By Paul O’Hara – Paul is an experienced blogger from London specialised on motoring and finance with a passion for good food and wine. This article has been created on behalf of, a car dealer and finance company based in Greater Manchester.

Speak Your Mind


Spam protection by WP Captcha-Free