Hankook Winter Tire Safety Poll: Good News and Bad for Canadians

Overwhelming majority of Canadians (68 per cent) don't know the most important factor in tire safety

BRAMPTON, ON, Nov. 2, 2015 /CNW/ - Hankook tire recently set out to gauge Canada's knowledge of basic tire safety and preparedness as we head into winter driving season. According to the Hankook Get a Grip Winter Tire Safety Poll, the good news is that the majority of Canadians (64 per cent) use winter tires and in the province of Quebec, where it's mandated by law, 97 per cent of drivers are compliant. Surprisingly, Atlantic Canada ranks second after Quebec for winter tire use (86 per cent) and the prairies, notorious for bad winters, ranked highest, next to BC, for not using winter tires (AB, 53 per cent; SK/MB, 58 per cent; and BC, 59 per cent). The bad news is there seems to be confusion over when to switch to winter tires, nearly half of all Canadians (42 per cent) didn't know when to switch; four in 10 Canadians (36 per cent) don't use winter tires at all and nearly seven in 10 Canadians (68 per cent) did not know the most important factor in tire safety (tire pressure). Drivers get a failing grade when it comes to appropriate frequency for checking tire pressure. Sixty per cent don't check tire pressure frequently enough.

Women know best the safety of winter tires; but millennials know when to put them on

Jeff Bullock, Hankook spokesman and 33 year industry veteran, knows a thing or two about tires. "Forty-two per cent of Canadians indicated that they didn't know when to switch to winter tires," he says. "The correct answer is when the temperature drops below 7° Celsius. Winter tires are made from a type of rubber that can perform in cold temperatures."

According to the poll results, women, more than men (47 per cent of women and 41 per cent of men) switch to winter tires because it is critical to road safety. As for the timing of when to switch, it was those with the least driving experience, the millennials, who got it right. Sixty two-per cent correctly stated that putting winter tires on the vehicle was dependent on temperature. Interestingly, the biggest group that does not use winter tires are the 55 plus crowd, 44 per cent of whom said they do not use winter tires.

Boomers: Tire pressure is most important safety factor

"The tire's air pressure is the most important safety consideration â" no matter what time of year it is," he says. "When you see stats like one third of Canadian drivers only check the tire pressure twice a year or less, that's concerning. If you think about it, the tire is the only thing keeping your car on the road. Tire pressure checks are an early warning system. If that pressure gets too low, or you get a flat while driving, you can lose control of the car. It's very dangerous, especially in winter conditions."

When it comes to checking tire pressure, the worst offenders were in Quebec, with 68 per cent not checking frequently enough and 11 per cent never checking. With age comes wisdom. Canadians over the age of 55 were most likely to correctly state tire pressure is the most important factor in tire safety. However, 61 per cent of them still got the answer wrong!

When it comes to winter tires, manufactures are constantly innovating. Hankook's Winter i*cept iZ features the latest tire design technology to ensure consistent grip in both icy and snowy driving conditions. This studless tire features an interlocking 3D sipe design for aggressive tread block that gives you great traction.  Going deeper into the tread, the spuit hole technology channels liquid out of the tire to deliver better handling, breaking and to increase wet condition performance and minimize hydroplaning.

"Hankook is constantly innovating to deliver the latest tire technology," says Bullock. "Gone are the days of noisy, clunky winter tires. Today's tires are quiet, safe and performance oriented â" even in the worst weather. There is lots of information to help you pick the best tire for your vehicle at hankooktire.ca".

Hankook Hacks: Winter Auto Safety

  1. Winter Tires: switch to winter tires when temperature drops below 7° Celcius
  2. Tire Pressure: Check it once a month, best to do at home, when the tires have been sitting, not-driven for at least 4 hours. Some underground parking lots have air pumps which is easier in snowy weather.
  3. Emergency Warmth: Keep a warm sleeping bag and tea light candles in the car in case of a breakdown. In a small space like your car, the candle provides warmth. Extra warm clothing as well.
  4. Fuel up: Don't let your gas tank get below the half full mark. Keep water and snacks on hand for you.
  5. Communication: Keep a flashlight in the vehicle so you can be located in the dark and a backup batter or charger for your cell phone.

About Hankook Tire Canada Corp.

Headquartered in Brampton, Ontario, Hankook Tire Canada Corporation is a technology-focused, customer-oriented company that markets and distributes a complete line of high performance and ultra-high performance passenger tires, light truck and SUV tires, winter tires and medium truck and bus tires in Canada. With quality-proven products, Hankook Tire Canada is rapidly growing to become an industry leader in Canada. As the National Partner and the Official Tire of Hockey Canada, Hankook Tire Canada actively supports grassroots sports and contributes back to local communities.

Visit www.hankooktire.ca for more details.

SOURCE Hankook Tire Canada Corp.

Image with caption: "Hankook tire recently set out to gauge Canada's knowledge of basic tire safety and preparedness as we head into winter driving season. (CNW Group/Hankook Tire Canada Corp.)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20151102_C9132_PHOTO_EN_44362.jpg

For further information:

Lisa Yerilin, GCI Group on behalf of Hankook Tire Canada, Lisa.Yerilin@gcicanada.com, o. 416.486.2563, m. 647.461.1049

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