In a Facebook post, RAR clarified the fitting and use of winter tyres in response to media reports about the fines Romanians risk if they do not have them fitted by 1 November.
RAR press release
“It is important to note that the law does NOT stipulate a deadline from which vehicles must be fitted with winter tyres or a minimum temperature to trigger the process. Therefore, specific tyres are required if the car is driving on a public road covered with ice, ice or snow, regardless of the season, and these requirements have not changed since the law was drafted,” the release said.
Thus, the date of 1 November remains only a calendar date for Romanian drivers, not the date from which fines start to flow, and headlines such as “Winter tyres compulsory from 1 November. Romanians in this country risk fines if they don’t change them” are clickbait, misleading for website traffic. In the headline given as an example, the first part is the ” sensation ” component, mandatory + compliance date, and the second part is the ” misleading ” component, being about Romanians in Austria.
The press release further states that “ALL tyres, regardless of their commercial name, which are marked with the letters M and S (meaning mud and snow), in the form: M+S, M.S. or M&S, meet the requirements for use in specific winter conditions laid down in national road legislation. /2002 on traffic on public roads, republished in 2006.”
At the end of the press release there is a recommendation to check the year of manufacture of the tyres fitted (DOT) and the tread depth.
What tyre manufacturers say
Depending on the season of use, tyres are divided into: a. summer tyres b. winter tyres c. all-season tyres.
Factors that differentiate tyres are the profiles and materials used. The tread is composed of the following elements: – central strip – grooves around the circumference of the tyre – lateral water evacuation strips – slanting grooves. The profiles may be symmetrical or asymmetrical to the median plane of the tyre. Note: asymmetrical profiles must comply with the manufacturer’s fitting instructions (the correct position is marked on the tyre). The materials used make the behaviour of the tyres different depending on the temperature. The outside temperature of 7°C (even if there is no snow) is the cut-off temperature between summer (above) and winter (below) tyres. All-season tyres are a compromise between the two types mentioned above, performance for each season is achieved with tyres specific to the season in which they are used, as shown in the graph below:
Braking distance depending on tyre type and outside temperature (Continental)
Winter tyres can also be used in summer, but it is not recommended as they increase braking distance (see graph above), wear out much faster, increase fuel consumption, decrease driving comfort by increasing tyre noise.
In conclusion, changing tyres depends on the road conditions: if there are winter conditions, such as snow, ice and ice pellets, it is mandatory to fit suitable tyres. This is not a worry for car hirers, as it is the car hire company that will change the tyres.
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