I WAS surprised to see the photograph that accompanied the article 'Cold shoulder for damsels in distress' (Fleet News, July 27) and also by the tone of the story.
The photograph clearly showed a woman changing a tyre in the middle of the road - the car was parked alongside the kerb and the centre markings of the road were visible behind her. Changing a tyre at the roadside is a very dangerous practice and is not one to be recommended. Additionally, changing a tyre in the centre of a road ranks as sheer stupidity and is even more dangerous than at the roadside. As experts in best practice road safety advice, I would recommend companies ensure their fleet vehicles are covered by a reputable roadside assistance company.
These companies carry out a tyre change under 'safe conditions' and the majority make it a priority for women drivers to attend.Encouraging drivers to 'train' to learn to change a tyre may seem a good idea, but if carried out as in the photograph it is far from safe.
It is unfortunate when a puncture occurs, but a focus by the fleet manager on regularly reminding drivers of the importance of tyre checks - for both wear and tear and pressure - at each fuel fill-up will help ensure tyres are in good condition.