Tyre Change Season Heats Up Though Icelandic Winter Lingers Skip to content

Tyre Change Season Heats Up Though Icelandic Winter Lingers

By Ragnar Tómas

driving in reykjavík
Photo: Golli (eastward bound traffic from Reykjavík).

Despite the official end of the studded tyre season on April 15, Icelandic police have not started issuing fines due to ongoing winter conditions, including ice on mountain roads. Tyre shops are, however, seeing increased activity as the season shifts.

Mountain roads remain icy

According to Icelandic regulations, the period for studded tyres ends on April 15 each year.

As noted by RÚV on Monday, however, winter weather has severely affected the country over the past few weeks in many areas, and the police have not yet announced when they will begin issuing fines for studded tyres; there is still ice on mountain roads in many parts of the country, conditions which are taken into account by law enforcement, who commonly afford drivers some leeway for changing tyres into the spring.

Nevertheless, activity at tyre shops has begun picking up. In an interview with Mbl.is yesterday, Þórður Þrastarson, at the Klettur tyre workshop on Hátún in Reykjavik, characterised the spring season as bracing: “It’s an invigorating challenge, and the days are often long,” Þórður remarked.

“Given that there’s been some snow cover in the town, things have slowed down a bit at our workshop, but it will quickly pick up again,” Þórður noted. He estimated that about a quarter of the vehicles in traffic are on all-season tyres. In his opinion, however, it is best to switch tyres between summer and winter. Many drivers still prefer studded tyres, though environmental considerations are increasingly leading to their decline.

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