An assessment of risks associated with the use of second hand tyres on light vehicles in Zambia
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Among the various risks on the road, driving second hand tyres is a contributor to accidents. Roadway is a dominant mode of transportation in Zambia and records the highest number of deaths and injuries caused by accidents in the country. An analysis of the traffic accidents recorded over a period of four years between 2011 and 2014 were approximately 112,327 (Zambia police, 2015). Out of these recorded, 275 were reported with a tyre problem in 2015 (Zambia Police, 2015). In Zambia, the business of selling second hand vehicles with second hand tyres has increased. This research evaluated the effects of driving second hand degraded tyres and their contribution to accidents in Lusaka, Zambia. It further suggests preventive measures. The main objective of this research was to identify the risks associated with the use of second hand tyres on light vehicles in Lusaka. A triangulation method involving the use of secondary data, interview and the use of a questionnaire was used to collect data. A questionnaire was distributed randomly to 80 users involving road users, mini bus drivers and tyre menders within Lusaka of which 45 respondents provided feedback. Structured interviews were conducted with car dealers, second hand tyre dealers, participants from Zambia Bureau of Standards, Police Traffic officers, and Road Transport and Safety Authority. Further, accident statistics from Zambia Police were used to analyse recorded accidents that occurred in the period of 2006-2015 within Lusaka province. Overall results revealed that users and second hand tyre dealers are ignorant of minimum tyre quality expectation. About 72 percent of Road user respondents revealed that the minimum tyre marking and numbers were not understood. Over 75 percent of the vehicle owners did not know that tyres have expiry dates on them. A total of 57.1 percent of the respondents were not conversant with either summer or v winter tyres. The results also revealed that over 80 percent of the respondents felt that the tyres were not fit for Zambian weather. ZABS revealed that they did not have standards on second hand tyres. All respondents dealing in new and second hand tyres revealed that they have never been inspected by ZABS since they started trading. Of the tyre dealers and respondents from the menders, only one vendor expressed knowledge of a disposal area for defective tyres. A total of 64.3 percent of road users did not know the dangers of driving second hand tyres whilst 78.6 percent did not know about the 1.6mm deep from the legal limit determined by the manufacturers. These findings suggest the need for authorities to improve safety of all road users by ensuring that imported second hand tyres meet the manufacturer’s minimum recommendation. Regular checks and inspection of tyre dealers should be improved by the responsible authorities such as RTSA, traffic police and ZABS. They should also be able to sensitize all road users.
University of Zambia
Master of Engineering in Project Management
- Engineering