POLICE are urging motorists to check their vehicles are roadworthy this winter after five were seized during a recent road safety operation.

North Yorkshire Police officers stopped and inspected 61 vehicles at various locations including in Ryedale, Hambleton and Harrogate between November 11 and 21.

They worked with the fire service during the road safety operation, which coincided with national campaigns by road safety charity Brake and the National Police Chief’s Council (NPCC).

Tyres, lights, number plates, wipers and general vehicle condition were checked by officers, with 20 motorists being given words of advice.

MOT, tax and insurance checks were also carried out and further action was taken for more serious matters.

Traffic Constable Jamie Lord said: “Due to the Covid MOT suspension in spring, some vehicles haven’t been tested for almost 18 months now.

"Despite the extension, motorists still have a legal obligation to keep their vehicles roadworthy.

“Most people do, but a small minority let their vehicles develop serious defects that are both illegal and dangerous – anything that affects stopping distance, handling or visibility can have dire consequences.

“We see serious crashes involving vehicles with bald tyres and other faults, which may have been avoided if they were properly maintained. It’s simply not worth the risk.”

Motorists are advised to check the wear indicators on their tyres – small rubber notches at regular intervals in the tyre tread. If the notches are flush with the tread, it’s time for replacements.

A quick lightbulb check before your next journey is also recommended, as bulbs are prone to blowing at this time of year following greater use.