Runaway tyre puts stamp on safety campaign

Haulier Barry Proctor is backing a call by Highways England for road users to carry out safety checks of their vehicles and loads before any journey is undertaken, after a runaway tyre smashed into one of his HGVs.

The owner of Barry Proctor Services said that if the wheel had hit a car rather than one his lorries then we would be talking about a fatality instead.

The incident occurred while his vehicle was travelling on the M42 towards Kidderminster during a weekday morning.

Proctor said: “The runaway wheel suddenly appeared on the carriageway and as a vehicle swerved to avoid it, the wheel crashed into the front of our vehicle causing damage in excess of £2,500.”

Richard Leonard, Highways England’s head of road safety said: “We always want our roads to be as safe as possible and for everyone to enjoy summer safely – but drivers need to play their part to make that happen.

“A brief ‘walk-around’ and carrying out a few simple safety checks before setting off on tyres, oil, water, lights and fuel could prevent a frustrating breakdown on the journey or something far more serious happening.

“With many vehicles not having been used for many weeks during lockdown or even over the winter, it is crucial that drivers are confident their vehicles are safe and loads secure.”

Highways England figures show more than 46,000 items were found on the nation’s motorways and major A roads over just 10 months, including a washing machine, a garden shed and a ship’s mast.

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