Using retread tyres poses danger to road users

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KUALA LUMPUR: The use of retread tyres by heavy vehicles, such as lorries and trailer lorries, can be dangerous and can lead to road accidents, said a lorry driver today.

The attitude of some employers who prefer to use retread tyres instead of the originals could be among the major causes of road accidents involving lorries and trailer lorries, said Malaysian Lorry Drivers Club patron Ahmad Faizol Yaakop.

Ahmad Faizol, 28, who has 10 years experience in the freight forwarding industry, also said many employers, without thinking of the risks involved, prefer to use retread tyres as the price is much cheaper than original tyres.

“Although the cost is cheaper, retreaded tyres are dangerous because they can explode at any time … even worse, debris from exploding retreaded tyres can break the windscreen of nearby cars due to the materials used,” he told Bernama here.

Ahmad Faizol, whose job is ferrying imported luxury cars and who is based in Port Klang, said retreaded tyres were available at prices as low as RM500 to RM600 per unit compared to the prices of original tyres that could fetch up to RM2,000 (per unit), depending on the brand.

Asked about the proposal to overcome accidents involving lorry and trailer lorry drivers, Ahmad Faizol said drivers should get enough sleep and rest to ensure they can focus on driving.

“I always sleep on the roadside of the highway before proceeding from Port Klang to the northern region, which normally takes two days for each cargo shipment,” said Ahmad Faizol, who hails from Taiping and has been working since he was 18 years old.

He said among the other factors that contributed to accidents involving lorry or trailer lorry drivers was the pressure from the employers who wanted the cargo to reach the destinations fast.

Meanwhile, another truck driver, Shamsuri Abdul Arip, 41, also agreed that having enough rest was important for drivers to ensure a safe journey.

“Usually lorry drivers don’t get enough sleep due to far-flung destinations. It’s very dangerous if the drivers do not get enough rest. Just come along with us and experience all the challenges we face in carrying out our jobs,” said Shamsuri, who drives three times a week to the same destination.

Meanwhile, Road Safety Department director-general Arifin Che Mat, when contacted by Bernama, said the cause of accidents involving lorry and trailer lorry drivers was still under investigation by the Royal Malaysia Police and the Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research.

“I think it’s better to wait for the outcome of the investigation instead of me speculating After all, it involves a variety of issues,” he said.

On April 2, police arrested the driver of the trailer lorry involved in the Km403.3 accident on the North-South Expressway near Tanjung Malim toll plaza, which resulted in six family members being killed in the incident at 7.40am.

On April 6, a passenger was killed and two others injured after the car they were travelling in collided with a lorry at KM17, Jalan Samalaju-Bintulu Sarawak.