ATS Euromaster has supplied and fitted more than 10,000 new cold weather tyres to 20 NHS and private ambulance operators around the country during the last six months.
The specialist tyres are proven to offer better vehicle handling and reduced stopping distances in temperatures less than seven degrees Celsius, which are common between October and March.
Demand for the high-grip fitments peaked in November 2012 with 2,847 new winter tyres being fitted to ambulances and rapid response paramedic cars.
ATS Euromaster also re-fitted thousands of cold weather tyres which had been safely secured in its tyre hotels since last spring.
George Price, assistant operational support manager at North East Ambulance
Service, said: “Fitting cold weather tyres has worked very well.
“We can respond to 999 calls with the peace of mind that our crews are able to reach patients safely in adverse weather conditions, meaning we can continue to provide the necessary care without compromise.”
As the first fast-fit provider to launch a dedicated cold weather tyre service for UK fleets in early 2010, ATS Euromaster is building on the expertise of parent company the Euromaster Group, which typically fits more than 1.5 million cold weather tyres every year throughout Europe.
The direct benefits of cold weather tyres start as soon as the temperature drops below seven degrees Celsius, when the performance of regular ‘summer’ tyres deteriorates.
As a result of the cold, the rubber becomes harder and less ‘elastic’. This means that the tyres suffer from reduced grip and braking ability, and offer a less comfortable ride.
Cold weather tyres help to alleviate this as the larger percentage of silica in their rubber compound prevents the tyre from hardening in the same way as synthetic rubber can in regular tyres.
This enables them to maintain better traction on dry roads throughout the cold weather, as well as when driving in the wet and on snow, slush and ice.
Peter Fairlie, group sales director at ATS Euromaster, explained: “For winter
2012/2013 we ordered in excess of £10 million worth of cold weather tyres – 60% more than the previous year, and we have seen the demand for these tyres continue to increase, as more fleets put them to the test and realise the benefits.
“Ambulances are some of the most important vehicles on the roads, and by providing cold weather tyres ATS Euromaster is ensuring these fleets are as safe as possible when tackling winter roads under demanding blue light conditions.”