Ford develops custom tyres to help RNLI spread water safety messages

Ford has helped create custom tyres that leave key water safety messages imprinted on the sand as part of a new initiative with the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI).

The three key messages – ‘float to live’, ‘no inflatables’ and ‘emergency? Call 999’ – are imprinted by tyres which are made from a mould of each safety statement. The mould is then used to create a tyre ‘sleeve’ which is wrapped around each Ford Ranger tyre and fixed into place permanently.

Ford tyre imprints
Ford tyre imprints

The RNLI is trying to raise awareness of beach and sea safety as more people choose to take their holidays in the UK amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Guy Addington, regional water safety lead at the RNLI, said: “Spending the day at the beach or out on the water is a great way to have fun and stay active but it’s easier than you think to get into trouble. With record temperatures, we’ve seen high numbers of people at UK beaches this summer so it’s imperative that we continue to raise awareness of important water safety messages. We’re delighted that Ford is helping us continue our mission to spread these messages that can help save lives.

Tyre covers
Tyre covers

“It is vital that anyone visiting the coast understands that the beach can be a dangerous environment and you must take responsibility for you and your family this summer. No one ever goes to the coast to be rescued yet RNLI lifeguards rescue 1000s each year.”

Ford acts as the official vehicle supplier to the RNLI. Since 2018, the company has provided the RNLI with more than 350 vehicles including the Fiesta, Focus, Kuga and Transit – among others.

A survey of 3,000 people found that 40 per cent of people who would take an inflatable into the sea in the UK have previously got into difficulty, while over a third of people would consider swimming in the sea alone.