Tire conditions crucial for long weekend travel

Above Watch: With the long weekend Alberta highways are sure to be busy, but as Erik Mikkelsen reports, many travelers are neglecting one key part of vehicle safety.

LETHBRIDGE- The Victoria Day long weekend is fast approaching, and for many Albertans, it’s the first chance to pack up the vehicle and head out on the open road.

Thousands of Albertans are expected to hit the highways and are being reminded to be prepared for any roadside emergencies.  Some residents say, they are.

“Well it’s always good to be prepared for anything and if you’re going to leave town, if you’re going to head for the highway, do you want to spend your long weekend on the shoulder of the road?” said one man.

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“I think you have to be more aware as opposed to prepared.  You can only prepare for a certain amount of stuff.  Things happen,” said another.

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However, many motorists are forgetting to check their tire conditions before they start their travels – including their spare tire.

“Something that’s hidden, tucked away – something that’s out of sight out of mind is something that you can easily forget.  So if you check it a couple, three times a year to make sure you’ve got air in it.  Whether you have your own air gauge or you kind of hit it and make sure its even got air in it at all, it’s very important,” said Kirks Tire assistant manager Lance Vadnais.

One couple was shocked when the realized that they haven’t thought to check their spare tire in quite sometime.

“Oh, not often… Yeah we don’t very often do we… Not really, no we don’t,” said the couple.

Vadnais recommends checking all tires, including RV’s, ATV’s and trailers that might be coming out of winter storage, before taking them with you. He says that tires that sit for a extended period of time can lose their air pressure quickly.

“Of course we all know something that sits in the sunlight for a long time can get old and dry out – your tires are no different,” said Vadnais.

So, before you head out this long weekend, check your tires or you could be stuck on the side of the road.

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