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RAT 5
1st Mar 2018, 08:05
Again & again; it has happened again. Every year when a dusting, or more, of snow hits the roads they grind to a halt. M80 drivers stuck for 13 hours. What we didn't hear was what was going on at the top of the queue. Was it a hill, an accident, what? The road ends somewhere where there was an escape.
If the road was jammed up by cars or an accident were they still on summer tyres.? If they were, and had ignored warnings not to drive, they the drivers could be liable for some serious accusations.
The facts about how the cars were configured is never mentioned. There are still guys who think that 4x4 do not need winter tyres. Duh!
The danger to life, cost to community, cost to local government that might be saved by sensible reconfiguration of tyres. Do we hear of such catastrophes in Scandinavia or Germany or other hilly/mountainous countries? There are those who say that a few days of snow don't justify the effort. The same could be said of those who have fire insurance on their house for 50 years and never know anyone who ever had a house fire. But it seems a good idea, just in case. Snow tyres are like an insurance policy. They work on low temperature, not just snow.
In snow they are a real bonus. They are one of the cheapest 'insurance' deals you can buy. They might avoid an accident, which is very expensive, and might avoid you being trapped which might save your life.
It would be good to know just how much of these M18 type scenarios are caused by wrong tyres, then a campaign could be better targeted.

G-CPTN
1st Mar 2018, 08:13
Road closures in snow are often caused by articulated vehicles (that don't fit winter tyres) struggling to gain grip on gradients.

RAT 5
1st Mar 2018, 09:50
So what should be done about that? Just accept that severe life threatening disruption like this will occur once or twice every year, or have a change of philosophy & policy?

I'd even heard stories, in the past, where ambulances couldn't make to out lying areas because of grip on summer tyres. How daft is that? They don't have the weight or fire engines, which I see usually have deep block all weather/terrain tyres. Ambulances are often needed at festivals in grassy muddy fields. Do they, or should they, follow suit?

We know, this tyre thing is a UK issue. On the continent it is a no brainer.

G-CPTN
1st Mar 2018, 10:18
Police have appealed to drivers of articulated vehicles to avoid travelling in areas of Northumberland affected by snow - there have been a dozen incidents so far today with roads across the region blocked by immobilised artics.
A section of a main A-road has been closed to all traffic except cars.

RAT 5
1st Mar 2018, 10:36
But given how much essential stuff is transported by artic's, surely there has to be solution other than don't drive. The guys could be en-route with valuable/vital stuff. You can't just hold up for a few days and wait for a melt. That could be days or weeks. The truck is required for other work. And if they do try and break though, and fail, what other vital essential deliveries of both goods & people are going to be prevented.
There has to be a solution, especially as it doesn't happen with such predictability on the continent or Scandinavia. Yes, they do get road closures, but it is severe and might include avalanches. It sure ain't just 20cm snow. They keep on trucking.

There are too many trunk routes in UK that can shut down at the mere sniff of a snow flake. Gritting is a stop-gap solution. True preparedness is more successful.

In germany winter tyres are not mandatory in all states. Hamburg is different to Garmisch, but, I believe, if you have an accident in winter conditions with summer tyres you are deemed to be 50% culpable, minimum.

In other countries, between certain dates, winter tyres are mandatory. These are generally hilly regions and subject to snow. I think Scotland and north England conform. I hear all-weather tyres are getting better, but it's still voluntary. The cost of compliance v cost of such disruption is minute. Has it ever even been discussed in Stormont? It surely would be if any MP was in that 13hr jam.
Or is this going to be a "they are not going to take my summer tyres away from me." argument?

P.S. I admit these thoughts are based on the reports of family who live either side of the Pennines in hilly areas. It is not common for them nor neighbours to consider winter tyres. They just grin & bear it when poo happens. Perhaps there are more sensible people than I give credit for; but I do still hear of 4x4 guys who think they are snow proof on summer shoes.

wowzz
1st Mar 2018, 11:03
Must admit I haven't seen anything on the local news about snow shutting the M18, but there has been a lot on the national news about problems on the M80.

ShyTorque
1st Mar 2018, 11:24
I received an email update from the RAC which outlined things that drivers ought to do to prepare for winter. Winter tyres didn't get a mention, which I found very surprising.

I certainly fit them to my own car. I keep extra wheels and swap them over as required, something I noticed many car owners in Germany do.

They make a huge difference, especially with regard to lateral grip and braking performance. 4WD is obviously good for traction, but to take full advantage of it on ice and snow, winter tyres are still needed because a 4WD on unsuitable tyres will skid on cornering or under braking just as well as a 2WD car.

WilliumMate
1st Mar 2018, 11:37
Here is the cost benefit analysis.

https://www.transport.gov.scot/media/14394/winter_tyres_-_cba_-_draft_paper_-_110228.pdf

dastocks
1st Mar 2018, 11:39
I recently put Michelin CrossClimate tyres on my car. These are an all-season tyre and I understand they are accepted as a suitable 'winter' tyre in parts of Europe that require winter tyres to be fitted during certain periods. I think the real problem is that summer tyres are supplied and fitted by default in the UK.

With a nudge from the regulators this behaviour could easily be changed - i.e. ban summer tyres during winter and require winter *or* all-season tyres to be fitted.

Icare9
1st Mar 2018, 11:43
A bit ironic that artics can't manage Arctic conditions......

Given that we are now in the snowflake generation (see what I did?) people need to understand that they cannot drive in snow/ice exactly the same way as in good weather.

We in the UK live in a Country that collapses in a heap if there is more than 2 days of rain/sun/snow/fog etc etc.

There are divots who think having a 4x4 means they can drive anywhere in mud/floods or snow when a) their vehicle is actually a soft roader capable of driving on dry grass only and b) they haven't got the driving skills to read the road ahead.

This is exceptionally cold but there should not be road closures by vehicles and I'd like to see prosecutions for drivers with vehicles that are unroadworthy (bald tyres etc) that cause any pile ups or road blocks because they can't get up a moderately steep hill.

OK, road blocked by 2 ft of snow, it'd take a specialised vehicle to get through, but when the average car gets stuck due to driver issues, then prosecute for careless driving at least.

G-CPTN
1st Mar 2018, 11:55
when the average car gets stuck due to driver issues, then prosecute for careless driving at least.

At times such as currently the police are too busy trying to keep roads open and diverting traffic from blocked roads to involve themselves issuing summonses.

The police (and county council highways staff) are currently working like one-armed paperhangers trying to combat the effect of today's snow showers of powdered snow being blown by the gusts of strong wind.

ShyTorque
1st Mar 2018, 12:21
I'm not sure if the police themselves fit winter tyres to most of their own vehicles, so prosecuting motorists for not having them would be difficult to justify. In 2010 (the last well publicised severe winter blast) my son had my old winter tyres on his RWD BMW. He was able to drive uphill past many stranded vehicles, including police 4WD and breakdown services vehicles, on the M62, west side of the Pennines. Many drivers had to spend that night in their vehicles, my son was pleased he didn't need to. He's now a total winter tyre convert. I did hear that the Manchester police were subsequently considering fitting winter tyres, I don't know if they do so.

Pontius Navigator
1st Mar 2018, 13:19
The last car I bought in May had a set of winter tyres. I swapped these out over summer and then back for a winter trip to Germany where they are mandatory. Come spring I binned them as they would not have seen out the next winter.

Now for those sensibly using winter tyres, reflect that only a very small proportion of car drivers have the space to store a spare set. Few have garages, those that do often have them filled with lumber. While many tyre fitting centres will store your tyres - at a cost - they can only do so when there are few people requiring storage.

Now my new house has a single garage and the luxury of space for winter tyre storage. We are also high up which adds to the attraction of a second set. Against that I have no imperative to travel in bad conditions.

Certainly, in Scotland, I had a set of winter tyres fitted with studs. I used these for 10 years and 4 different cars abandoning them only when the normal tyre had reach 205 and the 155s looked ridiculous. Over the years I lost a number of studs but there was no significant wear of the rubber.

charliegolf
1st Mar 2018, 14:44
Q for the petrolheads: what is the downside of having winter tyres on all the time? MPG? Handling?

CG

Ancient Mariner
1st Mar 2018, 15:32
Here, which happens to be Norway, most sensible people use winter tyres during the season, not mandatory, but try having an accident.
Haven't noticed any difference in MPG or handling, but then I don't drive 10/10.
I always buy my cars with two complete set of tyres. No room in the garage? I make wall fittings to hang them on. Good for room, good for tyres.
Artics will do just fine, fitted with the correct tyres, but those with only one rear axle on the truck should stay where they belong, in the South of Europe.
Per

RAT 5
1st Mar 2018, 15:33
WowZZ: Indeed. You are correct, my fault. Thank you.

Your address in Lincolnshire. I read that yesterday there were 20 different collisions within 3 hours, one or more fatal. I wonder how many were shod with summer boots. If the insurance companies levelled more blame at those who were, a la Germany, maybe there will be less during the next snow storm. Surely driving in snow on summer tyres is as negligent as drink driving; you are not fully in control of the vehicle and should invalidate part of the insurance.
The drink driving campaign worked, very much based on death & injury caused by stupidity. Yesterday there will have been crashes causing injury and death. Were they contributed to by summer tyres? Probably. Certainly blocked roads were.
So why not an awareness campaign to change peoples' habits. Same happened with smoking; yet every year we see this utter chaos being repeated.

What do they say about,

one is an accident,
twice is careless,
thrice is stupidity.

It's been repeated for decades.

MG23
1st Mar 2018, 15:40
Q for the petrolheads: what is the downside of having winter tyres on all the time? MPG? Handling?

It's a really bad idea to keep winter tires on through the summer. They generally have poor braking on wet roads, or dry roads at above freezing temperatures, and driving at high temperatures degrades the rubber so they become less grippy in the cold. And they knock about 10km/h off my safe cornering speeds.

I must admit, I have driven with my winter tires at over 20C before, but only because it was -30C and snowing a few days later so I kept them on until the snow season ended.

Plus they make my car sound like I'm driving a tractor over a bed of popcorn (I think that's the studs going in and out of the rubber as it turns).

And, yeah, we have $20 wheel racks in the corners of the garage, and stack the other set of wheels on there when we swap them over. But our garage is several times the size of one in the UK, if you're lucky enough to have one there.

Saintsman
1st Mar 2018, 15:42
No real need for winter tyres 99% of the time in the South where I am, so it is not really surprising that people don't have them. You rarely see them advertised and I imagine that a lot of people don't even know that you can get different tyres for the seasons.

MG23
1st Mar 2018, 15:46
There are 'all weather' tires now (e.g. Nokian make some), but I gather their performance tends to be merely adequate in all conditions, rather than good in the summer and lousy in the winter (or vice-versa).

Certainly winter tires made a vast difference to our Civic. We test-drove one at -40C with the OEM tires and it didn't want to start, stop or go round corners. With the winter tires we bought after buying the car, it doesn't really care about anything but cold sheet ice.

N707ZS
1st Mar 2018, 15:52
Got stuck behind a big new jag on Tuesday it's rear wheel drive just couldn't climb a very short incline and the weight of the thing was just too much to push. He had to try and turnaround and go another way.

Pontius Navigator
1st Mar 2018, 17:37
I repeat, many garages are too small for anything except a medium size car.

As Saintsman said, no real need on the south coast. Where the sub-7 degree daytime temperatures are rare, and cars probably changed more often than extreme cold weather, winter tyres are an expensive extravagance.

As RAT says, not to use winter tyres in these conditions is stupidity. So, with extravagance on the one hand and stupidity on the other, what then?

The answer is obvious DO NOT DRIVE if you haven't got the kit. In about 86/87 I got to work ( 6 miles) with chains. Only a Landie got through on that road as well. I wonder how many people have chains? I bought mine in Cyprus!

Fareastdriver
1st Mar 2018, 17:46
The garages aren't to small. They're not high enough for the 4X4s used to pick the kids up from school.

RAT 5
1st Mar 2018, 17:53
Where I live, non-UK, the SOP is you go to the tyre place, or your own dealer. You buy a full set of winter tyres. They store them for you, and with an appointment taking 30mins, they swap them over for you and store the summer ones. Next spring repeat the process. The charge is small and works a treat. It's the way the society is set up. It ain't wizardry.

I'm just amazed the tyre manufacturers don't market the concept themselves. And the blinkered blindfolded insurance companies, and the police & government. Weird.

Pontius Navigator
1st Mar 2018, 18:29
RAT, quite agree except that many UK tyre depots do not have the capacity to store many new tyres let alone lots of people's winter tyres. Tyres would have to be stored off site which would require special storage, transport and handling. The cost start to add up.

FED, I detract a bit of TIC. The house we just moved in to has a garage big energy for the builder's Land Rover. The next house has a double garage, their tractors live outside. As soon as the removals collect their boxes mine will be inside.

Pontius Navigator
1st Mar 2018, 18:31
BTW, I woulkd have bought Michelin Cross Climate except the dealer didn't stock them and supply was 6 weeks.

Blues&twos
1st Mar 2018, 18:57
Be interesting to see where the many, many people who live in terraced housing - without a garage and with a tiny garden (like south London where I used to live) would store their spare wheels.
Or those who live in flats.
In some cases it's just not practical.

racedo
1st Mar 2018, 19:54
Been in the Cambridgeshire / Lincolnshire area all week................... drove 50 miles to where needed to be yesterday and today on A1.

It was good, traffic moved aside from a truck broken down in inside lane at one point, no information on it being snow related and a car being side swipped by a truck today.......... also happens on Motorways regularly.

Gritters were out keeping roads clear, even a mile away from A1 where I was staying.

Temp was -5 degrees at 7.30am and rarely used brakes and I was driving a Peugeot 308 which handled weather ok.

RAT 5
1st Mar 2018, 19:55
RAT, quite agree except that many UK tyre depots do not have the capacity to store many new tyres let alone lots of people's winter tyres.

The depot does not store the tyres on site. They are stored in hangers on some farmers land or in some large commercial lock-up storage place. In city centres there are vast amounts of empty buildings just rotting. In the countryside there are farmers willing to build a barn for a known customer base at low rent. Where there is a will there is an economical way. It's education and realisation.

Pontius Navigator
1st Mar 2018, 21:08
RAT which is why I mentioned off-site storage. Economics do not add up
It cost me £100 pa for a tyre swap and self-storage. If I had bought 4 new rims the swap cost might be recouped in 4 years provided I did my own wheel change and kept the same car.

RedhillPhil
1st Mar 2018, 23:02
Speaking of muppets I was listening to a conversation in the newsagents this morning. Turns out that some bloke had decided to wash his car yesterday lunchtime. The snow had stopped here in Pz at about 11.35. Got it all lovely and soaped up and then hosed it all off. Now he can't get into his car - it's covered in a sheet of ice with totally frozen door locks.

Saintsman
2nd Mar 2018, 07:12
Lots of people held up or trapped in the UK at the moment due to the snow. Quite a few of them are moaning about how they have not had any help whilst they are stuck, but I wonder how many of them prepared for their journeys?

How many took food, water or blankets just in case? There was plenty of warnings.

VP959
2nd Mar 2018, 07:33
Where I live, non-UK, the SOP is you go to the tyre place, or your own dealer. You buy a full set of winter tyres. They store them for you, and with an appointment taking 30mins, they swap them over for you and store the summer ones. Next spring repeat the process. The charge is small and works a treat. It's the way the society is set up. It ain't wizardry.

I'm just amazed the tyre manufacturers don't market the concept themselves. And the blinkered blindfolded insurance companies, and the police & government. Weird.

Looking back over the last four cars I've owned, only once (yesterday) have I been in need of winter tyres. So if I'd have bought winter tyres for each car, they would have just died from old age and been chucked away for three of the cars.

I drove home last night in reasonable conditions, but there were still a lot of accidents around; people here just are not used to driving on snow, as they do it maybe once every ten years for maybe a day or two at most.

We had heavy snow last night, and I've just come in from digging our drive clear. The road has been cleared and is easily passable, but virtually no one is using it. This will be over by today here, I think, and then we'll probably be back to normal.

If push comes to shove I have a set of chains that I bought when we lived in Scotland. It's not been bad enough to use them yet though, as they are a PITA when driving on the clear sections of tarmac that are now showing.

Pontius Navigator
2nd Mar 2018, 16:45
VP959, I bought a pair of socks about 5 years ago, essentially they will enable me to drive a short distance to blacktop.

Crepello
2nd Mar 2018, 19:32
I can understand (e.g.) Scandinavian countries requiring certain tyre specs during winter, given their propensity for snow and ice. The UK's a different story - when was the last time such a major weather event occurred? (And - doesn't it rather undermine the 'global warming' narrative - nah, I won't go there!)

Storage is a major practicality. So's the fact that many of us simply don't have the financial wherewithall to spring for a set of winters at the first hint of cold.

Similarly, many major US airports have fleets of winter trucks, ready to keep things moving around this time of year. Conversely I once tried to fly out of IAH during heavy snow. Nothing doing - the 3 available de-icing trucks could only do so much. But they've barely turned a wheel in the intervening years - there's simply no investment case for augmentation.

Hope this ends quickly for all impacted. Interesting to note the variety of reactions across the public - from preparedness and generosity of spirit, to one particular person interviewed who seemed angry that "assistance" hadn't arrived within minutes of her vehicle getting stuck. I wonder if the govt will be blamed!

Oh - and final good wishes to use having to use chains... done it once, still recall the anger & frustration!

Pontius Navigator
3rd Mar 2018, 11:21
Just a point about winter tyres, they are not just for snow and ice. They are for low temperature use below 7 degrees. Different rubber formulation.

HHornet
3rd Mar 2018, 11:51
Back in the early 2000s, there was a weather bomb that came down the UK. I was at work with my Dad's old Rover. Sensibly I had sleeping bag, water supplies, two old planks, shovel, several pieces of chicken wire and some munchies in the car. I waited as long as I could, so that the snow had abated, but not yet frozen hard. it was an interesting drive home, until I got to an big hill before Nettlebed, luckily I had also found some sacks of road grit in the office carpark, so dumped them in the boot for extra ballast. Numerous cars had failed the hill, so I waited until all other cars had tried and then took a run at it. Got home safely but found out that other staff didn't get home until midnight and they had left as soon as the weather bomb appeared - and they were going a much shorter distance. What I couldn't understand was those attempting the hill were doing it in convoy, so when one got in trouble they all did.

ShyTorque
3rd Mar 2018, 16:01
Just a point about winter tyres, they are not just for snow and ice. They are for low temperature use below 7 degrees. Different rubber formulation.

Totally correct - I have two sets of wheels and tyres (steel ones for the winter, alloys go back on once the road salt has gone). I keep the winter wheels on till the daytime outside air temperature regularly remains above 10 degrees. Winters grip very well at those temperatures, especially in the wet but the wear rate begins to increase once you push them above that.

I'd rather keep the winters on slightly too long than keep the summers on in too low a temperature, mainly because these days I don't push the limits of grip as much as many I've observed.

UniFoxOs
3rd Mar 2018, 16:16
What I couldn't understand was those attempting the hill were doing it in convoy, so when one got in trouble they all did.

[email protected] doing it near here last night, dual carriageway with a not very steep hill. First one gets stuck - one lane blocked and all the silly buggers who tried to follow him up can't get started to get past. Next one goes up and gets stuck in other lane, road totally blocked. Took me half an hour to get 200 yards up the hill in the odd gaps that occasionally opened up around them as somebody managed to find a bit of traction. No problem with my heavy 4x4 - and I find the auto box a real boon on snow - makes it very easy to get away with no wheelspin.

Blues&twos
3rd Mar 2018, 17:27
My wife has a Fiat Panda 4x4, with the much derided 'all season' tyres, and it has been superb out here in the sticks in the snow. No issues at all with steep hills, and traction has been good on the move and pulling away from stationary. She loved it anyway but is particularly pleased now as these were the conditions she bought it for.

racedo
4th Mar 2018, 11:25
Lots of people held up or trapped in the UK at the moment due to the snow. Quite a few of them are moaning about how they have not had any help whilst they are stuck, but I wonder how many of them prepared for their journeys?

How many took food, water or blankets just in case? There was plenty of warnings.

Need to drive to Luton from Peterborough area or Fri afternoon, got 4 miles from airport and everything stopped, took 3 hrs on hill just oustide Luton from Hitchin.

Everything stugglred up hill and council were noticeabe by their abscence............. all over Luton.

Police eventually arrived and were making it up as we were there............ or in reality working with the people to adapt to the ever changing situation and shocking a great deal of common sense and flexibility :D:D:D:D

Police called up 2 gritters and blocked people going up hill and got them to go up again and again, previously they pulled 4x4s in and were going to tow people up if they stuck. Biggest issue was big BMWs / Merc with owners determined to go up even though no traction to do so.

Had a flight which was delayed by hrs so did make it :) and took off 5 1/2 hrs late.

Went to Eastern Europe and driving on clear roads at -18, 30 mins after flight where they were clear, even the side streets where currently staying with friends.

WilliumMate
4th Mar 2018, 11:46
I was in that too racedo, probably a bit behind you. Turned across to the Hitchin bound carriageway and routed to A1M, M25, M1 arriving at Airport some six and a quarter hours after leaving Biggleswade. Fortunately not flying but delivering a part to engineers.

racedo
4th Mar 2018, 22:06
I was in that too racedo, probably a bit behind you. Turned across to the Hitchin bound carriageway and routed to A1M, M25, M1 arriving at Airport some six and a quarter hours after leaving Biggleswade. Fortunately not flying but delivering a part to engineers.

I was close to bottom of hill, had stayed in outside lane and it moved faster before everything came to a halt.

Dumped car at Luton Parkway as just easiest and got bus to airport.

I can confirm that no roads were gritted or being swept in Luton and zero council workers to be seen.

Credit where its due to the cops as they really got stuck in, some well past "going home time".

If missed flight I missed flight but as turned out prob in better situation and less stressful than sitting in airport for hours.

Dont Hang Up
5th Mar 2018, 13:47
There are 'all weather' tires now (e.g. Nokian make some), but I gather their performance tends to be merely adequate in all conditions, rather than good in the summer and lousy in the winter (or vice-versa).

Speaking from experience of six years driving in Germany I can express with some authority the opinion that the best option is to have two sets of wheels - one with Winter tyres, one with Summer.

All-weather tyres may save the inconvenience of the bi-annual switch over, but are a) more expensive to buy, and b) wear too quickly in Summer.

I've tried it both ways.

Donkey497
17th Mar 2018, 23:20
And here comes the next batch of proof that two brain cells aren't required to gain a driving licence in the UK.....

BBC has just done a bit on the "Mini Beast from the East" dumping what looks suspiciously like an arctic whiteout of 3 - 4mm of snow on flat surfaces. Then followed it up with reports and interviews of folks becoming trapped on high routes with no food, water, phone or alternative ways of keeping warm in their vehicle because "it was bright and sunny when we left home..."

meadowrun
17th Mar 2018, 23:28
Misread a title again.
Thought signals intelligence had closed a road for weather.

Mr Optimistic
17th Mar 2018, 23:40
Where the hell is the M18? Didn't know we had one.

G-CPTN
18th Mar 2018, 00:01
Where the hell is the M18? Didn't know we had one.

It runs from the east of Rotherham to Goole and is approximately 26 miles (42 km) long.

M18 motorway (Great Britain) (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M18_motorway_(Great_Britain)).

Just to point out that the original event involved the M80 - not the M18 . . .

The M80 is a motorway in Scotland's central belt, running between Glasgow and Stirling via Cumbernauld and Denny and linking the M8, M73 and M9 motorways.

M80 motorway (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M80_motorway).

Trossie
18th Mar 2018, 07:45
Where the hell is the M18? Didn't know we had one."Bedford" -- Says it all. Needs to get out a bit more.

The M18 is a very effective link between the A1 and M1 (avoiding Sheffield!). It has snow at the moment but is running OK.

RAT 5
18th Mar 2018, 09:17
Come on guys: I admit it was typo error on the original posting, and unlike the individual posts it is impossible to edit the thread title. Some leniency please. The crux of the issue is that once again the dumbness of some UK drivers repeats itself.

What is it they say,

Once is an accident.
Twice is careless,
Thrice is just plain stupidity.

Watch this weekend and wonder.

Gertrude the Wombat
18th Mar 2018, 10:21
If the road was jammed up by cars or an accident were they still on summer tyres.? If they were, and had ignored warnings not to drive, they the drivers could be liable for some serious accusations.
I have long felt that whenever there are hold-ups caused by something like an "accident" it should be routine for the identity of the perp to be published so that we can all put in our invoices for our time spent in the queue.

Pontius Navigator
18th Mar 2018, 10:36
GTW, good thinking. The car that stopped for an legitimate reason can get recomoy from the next vehicle that hit him, but for you in the third or successive vehicles have no recourse to claim for consequential loss.

RAT 5
18th Mar 2018, 10:48
hold-ups caused by something like an "accident"

Hm? There are genuine accidents, bad luck or lots of swiss cheese to catch the inexperienced & untrained, but when the crash is caused by shear dumb 'I know better' negligence then there is such an argument.
It is similar to those who trot off into the mountains wearing completely the wrong clothing and shoes, not having checked the forecast, and then call upon others to rescue them at great risk & cost. If it is shown that it was their own damn fault then why not get a bill? Either they should take out a liability insurance, and then in the event the claim would be assessed, or the risk of having to pay up would sharpen the mind before leaping into the dark hoping it'll be alright.

It needs a change of cultural thinking. People have a social responsibility to act sensibly and when they don't, due to blatant disregard, and screw it up for 00's, why should there not be some recompense?
There are numerous occasions where e.g. buildings have collapsed or caught fire due to incompetent or fraudulent construction or lack of maintenance. No-one died, but there would be an intensive enquiry, fault would be found and penalties and compensation sought. It was a premeditated act. We think that is quite correct.
Mr/Mrs Numpty sets off on a hilly main route with warnings and forecast of snow, on summer tyres with low tread, and blocks the main arterial road, even worse causes a multi-car pile up that blocks it for hours, and causes physical and mental injury to many others: and gets off scot free except for the immediate car insurance accident claim; because it was an accident????
Just a question. Is that correct? A company would not be allowed to 'get away with it', should an individual? Or would it be 'blood from a stone argument'?

Pontius Navigator
18th Mar 2018, 11:03
RAT, the NHS can claim costs back from RTAs.

On causative claims, I wonder if that is due to the difficulty?

If you know who caused the problem then I suppose you might try through your insurance company if you have legal cover.

izod tester
18th Mar 2018, 11:09
I have 5 sets of chains in my garage - none of them fit my current cars as standard wheel and tyre sizes have changed over the years. Have all-weather tyres on both. Before I retired I had winter and summer tyres for the car I used to then and rarely had any problems in snow except for the time I had stopped at a junction only to see in my rear view mirror a truck sliding and pirouetting down the hill behind me. Fortunately, there was sufficient space in the traffic - and traction from my tyres to drive forward and out of the way of the collision. Also fortunately, the cars that had braked when seeing me coming out of the junction had stopped by the time the truck slid across the road and into the opposite hedge. No-one was hurt.

Blues&twos
18th Mar 2018, 11:13
There would probably be too many factors to consider to make it viable or worthwhile claiming for indirect effects of someone else's accident. Realistically, the chances of claiming back costs for people's time stuck in a queue would be miniscule - how do you calculate it? How do you prove it? The effort required would be immense for serious incidents where motorways are closed, for example.
And of course most ordinary people could never pay that level of compensation themselves- insurance companies would just rack up everyone's premiums to cover it.

Gertrude the Wombat
18th Mar 2018, 11:38
how do you calculate it?
My normal hourly rate for freelance work.

RAT 5
18th Mar 2018, 14:01
Here's a simple comparison. You knowingly go driving with a brake problem. You can't be bothered, have the time. money etc. to fix it, but you take the risk knowing you will have stopping problems. Murphy is sitting on your shoulder and you have an accident that is deemed your fault because you did not stop. Your car is inspected and it is deemed it was dangerous to be on the road. You would have a great number of books thrown at you.

You go out in snowy conditions with summer only tyres (not all-weather) knowing you will have stopping problems. Same result. Crunch; multi-car pile up. Big tail backs, huge cost & disruption to many parties. What's the difference?

WestofEMA
18th Mar 2018, 14:26
I guess the main difference is the law. It's not the law that you must have winter tyres on in England in snow (M18). Having faulty brakes on the other hand .....

RAT 5
18th Mar 2018, 15:01
I think you'll find the law says you have to be in control of the vehicle at all times, and that it has to be in road worthy condition. One could argue that having unsuitable tyres for the conditions violates both of those. I suspect the real issue is that it has never been tested.

Gertrude the Wombat
18th Mar 2018, 15:09
In the UK I've not knowingly come across "all weather tyres" or "summer tyres" or "winter tyres", I've only ever bought "tyres". My mitigation measures for the very occasional snow we get basically consist of (a) not buying rear wheel drive cars and (b) to the best of my ability, not driving too fast for the conditions.

Which has worked so far. I haven't had an accident, or got stuck, whilst driving a car on snow (getting up a hill in Sheffield in a Renault 5 one day was "interesting", but I made it). (I did come off my bicycle on ice in January, which I reckon was grossly unfair because that particular tiny isolated patch of ice was in a place where there's never a puddle or standing water, so I don't know how it got there.)

VP959
18th Mar 2018, 15:27
In the UK I've not knowingly come across "all weather tyres" or "summer tyres" or "winter tyres", I've only ever bought "tyres". My mitigation measures for the very occasional snow we get basically consist of (a) not buying rear wheel drive cars and (b) to the best of my ability, not driving too fast for the conditions.

Which has worked so far. I haven't had an accident, or got stuck, whilst driving a car on snow (getting up a hill in Sheffield in a Renault 5 one day was "interesting", but I made it). (I did come off my bicycle on ice in January, which I reckon was grossly unfair because that particular tiny isolated patch of ice was in a place where there's never a puddle or standing water, so I don't know how it got there.)


Interestingly, I ended up sat in a tyre place on Friday morning having two new rear tyres fitted (long story - but I now curse having a car with no spare tyre, just a stupid "use once only" very expensive combined pump and sealant kit).

Whilst sat there waiting, they had a video showing of an "all weather" tyre from, I think, Continental. One selling point in the advert was that these tyres complied with the legal requirements for winter tyres in a list of countries in Europe, yet could be used all year around, and performed as well in summer as other "summer tyres".

No idea if it was BS or not, but it seemed an interesting development

Gertrude the Wombat
18th Mar 2018, 15:35
One selling point in the advert was that these tyres complied with the legal requirements for winter tyres in a list of countries in Europe
OK, so actually I am aware that there might be such requirements, but I don't take my car to Europe, and I expect hire cars to meet local regulations in this respect as in all others, such that it's not something I have to worry about.

off watch
18th Mar 2018, 15:36
I'm with blues&twos : There would probably be too many factors to consider to make it viable or worthwhile claiming for indirect effects of someone else's accident.
In days gone by, the wreckage would be pushed out of the way asap & traffic got moving. Now the few traffic bobbies we still have, are required to measure / take statements etc etc before anything moves, with results that are frequently all too obvious on trunk routes :-(

Mr Optimistic
18th Mar 2018, 15:56
Ah, that's the M18. Been there once I think. Now the M80, the puzzle continues.....

Pontius Navigator
18th Mar 2018, 16:46
GTW, I suspect you are in the majority of the ignorant (I am not being rude).

I only really read up about winter tyres when my daughter was based in southern Germany. We took a risk and got out a day before the snow. Winter tyres are a requirement there. Then my next car came with winter tyres so I now needed to replace them for summer. The obvious tyre was the Michelin Cross Climate but there was a long waiting list.

PS, I had had studded mud and snow radials when I was in Scotland and they lasted 9 years with no significant wear.

Gertrude the Wombat
18th Mar 2018, 16:49
I've driven over Austrian alpine passes in snow. In hire cars which I claim it is reasonable for me to suppose met local regulations.

RAT 5
18th Mar 2018, 17:04
I've driven over Austrian alpine passes in snow. In hire cars which I claim it is reasonable for me to suppose met local regulations.

The question arises, therefore, why, when the trans pennine motorway is snow bound or forecast, or other trans Lake District main routes, or trans Scotland main routes, can not the authorities stipulate that only suitably shod vehicles can use those roads until they are declared open for summer tyre use? If they can do it in Austria and other hilly/mountainous regions, and everyone is happy to comply, then why not try it at home when it is necessary.
if you did take your own UK car to the Alps in winter, even Germany, one would assume you'd obey the local regulations. The issue in the UK is there are no such regulations and no-one upstairs seems to want to open the debate. They rely on the apparent common sense of the public, and each year we see where that gets everybody. I've also wonder why the tyre manufacturers don't want to increase sales and so push the idea, especially in Scotland as a starter.

Was it Churchill, or some other wag, who suggested that the definition of idiocy was to keep repeating the same actions of failure and hoping for a different result, eventually. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow. And then go out to the hills with a deck chair & thermos and watch the fun begin.

I have mates in Glos', Yorks, Lancs, Scotland, who always fit winter tyres. In the last few years, with Mother Nature's antics, they have been both smug & frustrated surrounded by the slithering dithering summer shod brigade.

On the continent, even the flat lands, we don't think about the likelihood or not of needing winter tyres; come late November we just do it. The weather is too unpredictable and comes too quickly. We just do it. And note; I said winter tyres, as in designed for cold temps as well as snow tread. I didn't say snow tyres.

I've tried my best to educate and make the argument. I rest my case & leave deaf ears to their fate.

Gertrude the Wombat
18th Mar 2018, 17:09
Was it Churchill, or some other wag, who suggested that the definition of idiocy was to keep repeating the same actions of failure and hoping for a different result, eventually.
Changing the subject slightly, whoever said that had never tried to use a computer :D:yuk::ok:

Pontius Navigator
18th Mar 2018, 17:23
RAT, it was a regular broadcast on BFBS in Cyprus not to drive up Troodos unless with 4 wheel drive or chains. Of course that was before ordinary cars had 4 wheel drive.

dsc810
18th Mar 2018, 17:34
In Austria additionally in some conditions the requirement is for snow chains to be fitted to be allowed up the pass (or 4 wheel drive may be acceptable I recall)
...and each car is inspected by police at the start of the pass.

So for a Km or more before the pass entry one can see long lines of cars at the verge side with people struggling with the things and the instruction manual as they try to fit them.
And of course likewise on the other side of the road as people are taking them off having exited the pass.

Mr Optimistic
18th Mar 2018, 17:58
On the receiving end of a rather tedious lecture on tyres from a petrol head a few weeks ago. Apparently it's AT tyres we should use. He reckoned good all year and no impact on wear.

Mr Optimistic
18th Mar 2018, 17:59
Allegedly that was Einstein I believe, not Churchill.

Pontius Navigator
18th Mar 2018, 18:03
Dsc, I recall at Avimore a Bentley owner doing a wheel change up at the ski slope car park. He obviously decided it would be prudent for the drive down. They were huge and fitted with chains.

ShyTorque
18th Mar 2018, 20:26
In the UK I've not knowingly come across "all weather tyres" or "summer tyres" or "winter tyres", I've only ever bought "tyres". My mitigation measures for the very occasional snow we get basically consist of (a) not buying rear wheel drive cars and (b) to the best of my ability, not driving too fast for the conditions.

I've got three cars here. Two are rear wheel drive. All three have two sets of wheels, with winter tyres on the second set. I do tend to drive the fwd one most in winter because it's the least valuable and one of the others doesn't actually have a roof.

Until you've personally experienced the difference a good set of winters makes, you probably wouldn't believe it. In the last snow we had a couple of weeks ago the front wheel drive car was able to get up drifted snow covered hills that Land Rover drivers weren't attempting.

As far as the performance of winter versus summer tyres is concerned, I've far rather drive on winter tyres in the summer than on summer tyres in the winter (having done both).

Trossie
19th Mar 2018, 13:29
I drove on the M18 yesterday. First two lanes were generally OK, third (overtaking) lane was the one most likely to be slushy (A1 and M1 were slightly worse). Even with my winter tyres I was going cautiously and totally avoided the 'slushy' lane. I was amazed at the Range Rover, BMW, Audi and Mercedes idiots overtaking in that slushy lane when the traffic was travelling at reasonable speeds for the conditions; and I would be surprised if even a tiny percentage of them had appropriate tyres for that slush. I would like to see them charged for reckless driving if they then slide into someone and cause a crash ("So you considered that you were fully in control of your vehicle at that speed in those road conditions? Please explain how?").

Trossie
19th Mar 2018, 13:39
...

As far as the performance of winter versus summer tyres is concerned, I've far rather drive on winter tyres in the summer than on summer tyres in the winter (having done both).

Agreed. Below 7degC even on a dry road, winter tyres are safer than summer tyres. Winter tyres are still safe in summer, just that they wear out faster than necessary in the warmer conditions. It is below 7degC for a lot of winter, even 'dahn sahth'.

I know an amusing story of someone 'dahn sahth' who has winter tyres fitted and has to rescue someone in the family who "couldn't get up their driveway" on their summer tyres due to the snow (and hadn't fitted the winter tyres, that they do have, "because it doesn't get that cold down there"!!)! That was this month.

funfly
19th Mar 2018, 13:43
Went to a talk last week by a well known advanced driver who goes under the name of Reg Local. He was in Russia recently and he said that, despite the impression you might get from YouTube videos, there are few accidents on the snow covered roads because virtually all cars are fitted with studded tyres and he claimed that they are very easy to drive on.
Not too sure of the difference between 'studded' tyres and what are know here as 'Winter' tyres.

Trossie
19th Mar 2018, 14:01
Not too sure of the difference between 'studded' tyres and what are know here as 'Winter' tyres.A big difference. I wouldn't want to drive on a dry road on studded tyres as the hard studs would significantly reduce your traction/braking/steering. They might even be illegal due to damage that they are likely to cause to dry roads. Winter tyres are a softer compound (and hence don't get 'harder' below 7degC with the proportional lack of traction/braking/steering) and a totally different tread. (The tread is so different that you can tell the difference between winter and summer tyres at a simple glance.) Due to the softer compound they will wear faster in warmer, dry conditions but they will still be safe.

I would not drive at 70mph in -1degC and slush, as I saw several doing yesterday, on summer tyres. Full Stop!

tow1709
19th Mar 2018, 15:18
4489

This is a studded tyre on an ordinary family saloon . It was taken in Reykjavik last December. They make a noise like driving on popcorn as someone else has already mentioned.

Pontius Navigator
19th Mar 2018, 16:38
I know studs on dry roads is illegal in some countries but not AFAIK in UK. I used them every winter in Scotland. There are noisier but I didn't notice any difference in handling. Over the years I lost a few studs.

Ancient Mariner
19th Mar 2018, 17:00
Went to a talk last week by a well known advanced driver who goes under the name of Reg Local. He was in Russia recently and he said that, despite the impression you might get from YouTube videos, there are few accidents on the snow covered roads because virtually all cars are fitted with studded tyres and he claimed that they are very easy to drive on.
Not too sure of the difference between 'studded' tyres and what are know here as 'Winter' tyres.

Studded tyres are Winter tyres with studs in them. I used to stud my summer tyres when I had very little money. Nothing like reversing at 80 km/h in a '59 Beetle. :hmm:
Per

ATNotts
19th Mar 2018, 17:42
Whilst sat there waiting, they had a video showing of an "all weather" tyre from, I think, Continental. One selling point in the advert was that these tyres complied with the legal requirements for winter tyres in a list of countries in Europe, yet could be used all year around, and performed as well in summer as other "summer tyres".

VP959

It's not, I've had a set of Vredestein Quatrac 5 tyres on my car up until last August, when I flogged it, and drove in Europe and the UK on snow, the grip is in my opinion so much better than summer tyres, and the last ones I bought were only 20% more expensive than summer tyres from the same manufacturer.

I've actually been looking for some this weekend, since the front boots on my new car are in need of replacement - and I'll get all 4 done. They aren't that easy to get in UK but your dealer can get them (many of the big dealers don't regularly market Vredestein products. The Michelin Cross Climate I think is more available.

Without wishing this to sound like a testimonial, tyre noise and wear are comparable with other main brands of summer tyre.

ShyTorque
19th Mar 2018, 19:28
I know studs on dry roads is illegal in some countries but not AFAIK in UK. I used them every winter in Scotland. There are noisier but I didn't notice any difference in handling. Over the years I lost a few studs.

It's not illegal to drive on studded tyres in UK, but it is illegal to drive on tyres that are damaging to the road surface. This is generally interpreted as:

Studded tyres on snow = OK
Studded tyres on no snow = Not OK.

After winters in Norway the roadsides have a layer of powdered stone, caused by the grinding action of studded tyres.

RAT 5
19th Mar 2018, 19:54
A30: BBC news tonight. Here we go again. Slipping & sliding in Devon, but I heard there was some difficult drifting later on. Last night many stranded people needed rescuing from the snow covered roads and camped out in village/school hall? I heard from local friends that some drifting had created a problem, but I wonder how many were stuck on just a few snow flakes before the deep stuff arrived, and could have escaped with winter tyres. I don't now how many crashes there were; some probably.

I have read a test, a few years ago, whereby it was concluded that front wheel drive, especially, on winter tyres in snow/slush/ice had better braking, & traction on slopes, up & down, & corners than 4x4 on summer tyres. Somehow that message has failed to get across, especially in the UK SUV market. Rear wheel drive was also better than 4x4, but less than front wheel drive.

SARF
19th Mar 2018, 20:04
As mentioned it’s not worth it in This country.. there is not enough cold weather .
It’s probably more economically beneficial to spend money on a new dartford crossing or dauling a few A roads,than funding huge warehouses to store a 100 million off season tyres

Trossie
19th Mar 2018, 20:14
As mentioned itís not worth it in This country.. there is not enough cold weather .
Itís probably more economically beneficial to spend money on a new dartford crossing or dauling a few A roads,than funding huge warehouses to store a 100 million off season tyres
Those 'off season' tyres don't take that much space. The first time we changed and I cleared out a corner of our small garage to pile the tyres up, I then looked around for a place to put the 'junk' that had been where the tyres were now piled. Found that most of it went back straight into the same place, down the hollow middle of the pile of tyres!!

SUVs and 4x4s with summer tyres in snow just become big, heavy, un-steerable sledges on downhills with snow. A front-wheel drive with winter tyres on the front can still be satisfactorily controlled, with caution, on that same downhill. But can you tell that to any 4x4 driver? Not a chance, because they have that "I've got a 4x4" attitude!

Back to what I said about winter tyres: below 7degC winter tyres are safer than summer tyres, even on dry roads; we get a lot or winter that is below 7degC.

Gertrude the Wombat
19th Mar 2018, 20:24
Those 'off season' tyres don't take that much space. The first time we changed and I cleared out a corner of our small garage to pile the tyres up, I then looked around for a place to put the 'junk' that had been where the tyres were now piled. Found that most of it went back straight into the same place, down the hollow middle of the pile of tyres!!
Yeahbut if you live somewhere where you'd only need winter tyres about once every 15 years, which is about how often you change cars, so some sets of winter tyres would never get used, it sounds really silly compared to the cost of simply deciding you can live without driving anywhere for a day or possibly two.

SARF
19th Mar 2018, 20:39
Also these days most drivers can’t even change a wheel..
never mind all 4. Kwik fit will be a busy every April and October.

In fact I’m almost certain more people will die or get injured, jacking their cars up to change the wheels, than they do driving on icy roads

Pontius Navigator
19th Mar 2018, 22:22
Also these days most drivers canít even change a wheel..
never mind all 4. Kwik fit will be a busy every April and October.

In fact Iím almost certain more people will die or get injured, jacking their cars up to change the wheels, than they do driving on icy roads

To change a wheel I had to stand on the brace and bounce. Over torqued or what. 180lb at about 5-6 inches from the nut.

Trossie
20th Mar 2018, 09:01
Yeahbut if you live somewhere where you'd only need winter tyres about once every 15 yearsSo ... you live somewhere where the temperature only gets below 7degC 'about once every 15 years'?

And watch out for this 'global warming' myth. There are signs that we could be going back into a cooler period, the same as it did after the last two warming periods. You'll need those winter tyres more than you think!!

finncapt
20th Mar 2018, 11:42
Living as I do in Finland, I have two sets of wheels (winter with studded tyres and another with m+s tyres) for two cars.

They do take up a bit of room in my warm warehouse.

Companies offer changing and storage services.

Changing eight wheels twice a year is starting to get difficult at 71 - the Landrover wheels are quite heavy.

The local boy scouts set up a wheel changing facility, in the fire station forecourt, at the start of winter - sort of Finnish "bob-a-job" - and I may start to use this service.

meadowrun
20th Mar 2018, 12:00
Always a good cause.
meadowrun. Patrol Leader, Fox Patrol (ret).

MG23
20th Mar 2018, 19:34
After winters in Norway the roadsides have a layer of powdered stone, caused by the grinding action of studded tyres.

As I understand it, the Scandinavian countries have regulations requiring studded tires to do minimal damage to the road surface. Our Nokians have studs that retract into the tire when the surface is too hard to dig into, and they're experimenting with tech to allow you to only extend the studs when needed.

We're not talking about the old 1960s studded tires with six-inch nails poking out of them.

Pontius Navigator
20th Mar 2018, 20:27
As I understand it, the Scandinavian countries have regulations requiring studded tires to do minimal damage to the road surface. Our Nokians have studs that retract into the tire when the surface is too hard to dig into, and they're experimenting with tech to allow you to only extend the studs when needed.

We're not talking about the old 1960s studded tires with six-inch nails poking out of them.
Those were spiked tyres not studded and definitely only for hard packed snow

India Four Two
21st Mar 2018, 00:02
To change a wheel I had to stand on the brace and bounce. Over torqued or what. 180lb at about 5-6 inches from the nut.

My VW Jetta has a ridiculous L-shaped wheel wrench, with about a 1 foot handle. No amount of bouncing would release some of the nuts, when I was changing over to my winter tires/tyres.

I was getting concerned that I would either injure my foot or have a heart-attack, so I replaced the wheels, jacked the car down, drove to Home Depot and bought a three foot long metal water pipe, that fitted over the wrench handle! No problem with over-torqued wheel nuts now!

I make sure that when I'm tightening the nuts, I don't use the extension.

Pom Pax
21st Mar 2018, 02:34
Renault jack as supplied, tried the water pipe mod, over torqued nut stayed firmly in place, jack handle rotated 90 degrees then fell off socket.

Of course 4 x 4 s are the weapon of choice here but fitted with Desert Duellers!

treadigraph
21st Mar 2018, 07:22
Mate told me yesterday his latest car (can't remember what) has a slow puncture. Looked in boot, no jack, no spare wheel, just a can of tyre-weld.

Yamagata ken
21st Mar 2018, 11:36
I have all the kit. It starts with a double garage. Use 90cm breaker bar plus extention and socket to release the wheel nuts. Jack (trolley jack) to lift the corner. Change wheel, drop it to the ground, tighten with spider (short symmetrical lever).

It takes me about 3 hours (including firing up the compressor and setting pressures) to switch the family fleet (3 cars) between summer and winter tyres.

A couple of years ago I went through wheel-change choreography with my sons. Last year No2 son had a puncture and they were able to manage the wheel change. Win :ok:

Ancient Mariner
21st Mar 2018, 12:08
I also have all the kit, it comes with the car. Two cars, twice a year, no problem.
I use the supplied wrench for one very good reason, if used to tighten the wheel nuts, it will also be able to release them.
Comforting if you have a puncture. The wrench's arm length is not random.
Per