Certain types of tires may not cut it in Utah this winter

Jan 11, 2024, 4:00 PM | Updated: Jan 18, 2024, 10:58 am

Cars drive through a snowstorm in Salt Lake City on Jan. 10, 2024....

Cars drive through a snowstorm in Salt Lake City on Jan. 10, 2024. With used car prices high and winter making roads dangerous, is your car more likely to be totaled by insurance companies after a crash? (Marielle Scott, Deseret News)

(Marielle Scott, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — Extreme cold and snowy weather this week has produced a trend of car accidents on the roads. This “trend” may continue throughout the rest of winter if drivers don’t have the right kind of tires on their cars.

Danny McGraw, a Big O Tires manager, told KSL NewsRadio that most of the car damage they’re seeing is coming from drivers who aren’t driving on snow tires and are losing traction on the slick roads.

“A lot of customers aren’t [well informed] when it comes to when you buy a new car [and] what kind of tires that are on it,” he said.

“They just assume, ‘I got an all-season tire,’ but that’s not the case in a lot of these cars.”

McGraw said snow tires are made with softer rubber than regular tires, which helps give the car better traction in snowy conditions.

“Your rubber compound will harden on a regular all-season tire,” McGraw said. “They get really hard and they’re not flexible anymore, and the flex in the tires is what gives you traction.”

He said it’s important to check the tires to see the size and whether they are all-season or strictly for the summer months. In this weather, McGraw said snow tires will give the best traction and help reduce accidents.

Things to know about snow tires

According to McGraw, when buying a new car, a lot of people don’t bother to check what size or what kind of tires they have. And right now, having summer or old all-season tires is not going to provide any traction on our roads. McGraw said drivers often don’t know enough about their tires to stay safe.

He said snow tires will give the best traction and help reduce accidents in this year’s weather conditions.

The best time to put snow tires on a car is in October. But late is better than never, especially if it could prevent an accident in the upcoming weeks.


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Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.


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Certain types of tires may not cut it in Utah this winter