NASHVILLE, Tenn., May 27, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Memorial Day marked the unofficial start of summer, and with the Bridgestone Americas (Bridgestone) summer travel survey indicating that 89 percent of Americans take summer road trips, the company urges drivers to check their tires to help ensure they are in proper shape before hitting the road. The reminder is part of the company's ongoing driving safety campaign in support of National Tire Safety Week (May 24-30, 2015).
The highways should be busy this year with a six percentage point increase compared to last year in the number of Americans willing to take summer road trips, according to the April 2015 survey commissioned by Bridgestone and conducted online by Harris Poll among more than 2,000 U.S. adults. Americans also say they are willing to drive 660 miles on average, which is 80 miles farther compared to 2014. More drivers on the road and longer trips can mean more opportunities for car trouble. This is an important issue, as Americans revealed that one of the worst things that can ruin a summer road trip is getting a flat tire (50 percent), second only to a fender bender (74 percent).
To help these travelers with vehicle preparations, Bridgestone is encouraging drivers to take advantage of free tire pressure checks, which currently are offered at all Bridgestone Retail Operations (BSRO) stores: Firestone Complete Auto Care, Tires Plus and Wheel Works.
"With Americans willing to travel even farther this year than last year, it's more important than ever to make sure tires are in good shape," said Chris Welty, education specialist, Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations. "National Tire Safety Week provides a timely reminder before drivers hit the road this summer. Proactive tire maintenance can help ensure a smooth and safe trip – so your vacation truly can start the minute you pull out of the driveway."
In order to help keep tires road-ready, the company recommends three steps: inflate, rotate and evaluate.
- Inflate: Tire pressure should be checked at least once each month, as well as before long trips or when carrying extra load, using a tire pressure gauge. Tires can lose one psi (pounds per square inch) per month under normal conditions.
- Rotate: Regular tire rotations also will help prevent irregular and premature wear. Tires should be rotated and balanced according to the vehicle manufacturer's recommendations found in your vehicle owner's manual, or every 5,000 miles.
- Evaluate: Routinely look for signs of tread wear or damage. Drivers should check tread depth to make sure their tires have enough traction to grip the road. Use a tread depth gauge or the "penny test." Check by inserting a penny into each tread groove with Lincoln's head upside-down. If you can see all of Lincoln's head (including his hair), it's time to shop for a new set of tires.
Bridgestone also offers a series of tire care and service tips for commercial trucks on the road this summer. Commercial drivers always should refer to their vehicle placard to determine the proper tire size, load carrying capacity, speed capability and service type. In addition, it is important not to exceed the tires' maximum recommended speed, which may be lower than the speed limits. Finally, inspecting tires for cracks, cuts, bulges and penetrations, as well as setting and maintaining proper cold inflation pressures are important steps to take when inspecting commercial tires.
For more information about National Tire Safety Week and tire care tips, visit www.tiresafety.com.
This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Poll on behalf of Bridgestone from April 28-30, 2015 among 2,004 adults ages 18 and older. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact Rachel Withers, [email protected].
About Bridgestone Americas, Inc.:
Nashville, Tennessee-based Bridgestone Americas, Inc. (BSAM) is the U.S. subsidiary of Bridgestone Corporation, the world's largest tire and rubber company. BSAM and its subsidiaries develop, manufacture and market a wide range of Bridgestone, Firestone and associate brand tires to address the needs of a broad range of customers, including consumers, automotive and commercial vehicle original equipment manufacturers, and those in the agricultural, forestry and mining industries. The companies are also engaged in retreading operations throughout the Western Hemisphere and produce air springs, roofing materials, and industrial fibers and textiles. The BSAM family of companies also operates the world's largest chain of automotive tire and service centers. Guided by its One Team, One Planet message, the company is dedicated to achieving a positive environmental impact in all of the communities it calls home.
About Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations:
Nashville, Tenn.-based Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations (BATO) is a business unit of Bridgestone Americas, Inc., whose parent company, Bridgestone Corporation, is the world's largest tire and rubber company. Reporting into the BATO business unit are the company's Latin American tire operations; the U.S. and Canadian consumer tire businesses; the U.S. and Canadian commercial tire businesses; and Bridgestone Retail Operations, LLC, which operates the largest network of company-owned automotive service providers in the world. BATO develops, manufactures and markets Bridgestone, Firestone and associate brand tires. The business unit is focused on retail, wholesale and original equipment markets, supplying passenger, light truck, commercial vehicle, off road, motorcycle, agricultural and other tires, as well as retreads, to its customers in the Americas.
About Bridgestone Retail Operations, LLC:
Bridgestone Retail Operations, LLC (BSRO) is headquartered in Bloomingdale, Ill., and operates the largest network of company-owned automotive service providers in the world — more than 2,200 tire and vehicle service centers across the United States — including Firestone Complete Auto Care, Tires Plus™, Hibdon Tires Plus, Michel Tires Plus and Wheel Works store locations. Credit First National Association and Firestone Complete Fleet Care™ operations are also part of BSRO. BSRO is a member of the Bridgestone Americas family of companies.
SOURCE Bridgestone Americas, Inc.