CALLING MUMS-TO-BE: PUT SAFE TYRES ON YOUR BIRTHING CHECKLISTTo ensure the most important return journey that parents will ever make – the trip to and from hospital, before and after the arrival of a new baby – is as safe as possible, it’s vital to carry out a series of tyre safety checks. While pregnant women may not be able to carry out the checks themselves, TyreSafe is urging mums-to-be to ask a partner or local TyreSafe retailer to ensure their tyres’ air pressure, condition and tread depth are safe and legal.
Pregnant Janine McCarthy, 25, knows only too well about the dangers of defective tyres. She is supporting the ‘Home safely on safe tyres’ campaign so that others do not have to face what she went through. Janine had a miraculous escape after a defective tyre on her car rapidly deflated, causing her vehicle to spin out of control and crash into the central reservation on a busy motorway near her home. The car flipped six times before coming to a standstill. She said: “I remember the back wheels of the car skidding so I applied the brake gently, but as I did this, the car skidded right round out of control. “I could see on-coming traffic and I panicked, braking harder. It caused the car to tip and start to roll and smash into the central metal fencing. It was terrifying. Witnesses told me afterwards that the car smashed into the barrier, flew to the opposite barrier, and then rolled down into the middle of a field. “I recall my arms being crossed in front of my face and the airbag going off. I felt dizzy and remember thinking ‘this is it’. “When the car came to a standstill I laughed out of shock that I was ok. I was petrified that something had happened to my baby; I was nearly three months pregnant at the time and had been waiting for my first scan. “The emergency services told me they couldn’t believe I had walked away from the crash alive.” Janine was taken by ambulance to hospital for checks and an emergency scan. Thankfully she escaped the ordeal with just minor cuts and bruises – and her unborn baby was fine. She added: “I feel so lucky to be alive and the relief of seeing my first baby on screen wriggling around was simply amazing. TyreSafe’s campaign is so important and I want everyone to act on the message ‘Home safely on safe tyres’. I was lucky, but defective and illegal tyres can ruin lives. As new mums-to-be, we pack our hospital bags with everything we need and check our baby car seats – but we need to add CHECK TYRES to our birthing checklist. “There is nothing more important than getting our new-born babies home safely.”