Tyre pressure monitoring expert WheelRight has discovered that a quarter of the UK’s cars have at least one tyre that is dangerously underinflated. This follows on from research by Tyre Safe which found that up to 10 million cars on Britain’s roads have illegal levels of tread depth.

Meanwhile, the average HGV is driving on Britain’s motorways with at least one dangerously underinflated tyre at any one time, according to WheelRight’s data.

WheelRight’s survey of the nation’s tyres took place at Keele Services on the southbound M6 during March to June 2015. The scheme is being run by UK company WheelRight in association with Highways England and Welcome Break.

John Catling, CEO of Wheelright, said: “We’ve been offering a free pressure check to motorists and HGV drivers using our drive-over tyre pressure system at Keele Services on one of Britain’s busiest stretches of road – the M6.

"We have taken thousands of tyre pressure readings and have collated some pretty shocking statistics which reveal the true extent of our tyre neglect. Every year, the UK sees approximately 25 deaths and nearly 1,500 serious accidents attributed to poorly inflated or defective tyres. We believe that lack of awareness on the impact tyre pressure can have on road safety is putting drivers at risk.”

He added: “The lowest tyre pressure reading we’ve taken for a motorist on our system was a very low, and very dangerous, score of just six psi (pounds per square inch), when it should have been closer to 30 psi to be safe. An accident waiting to happen.”

Catling concluded: “We’ve seen first-hand that motorists are keen to learn more about what action they can take to keep their vehicles and themselves safe. If a motorist using our system receives identifies a low pressure reading, our on-site support team at Keele Services will direct drivers to the air machines located a few metres away and provide advice on how to inflate tyres correctly and to what level.

“We believe that regular tyre pressure checks offer significant cost and safety benefits to all drivers – not to mention, peace of mind.”