We accepted an invitation to join Firestone in Hamburg at their music festival. We had the time of our lives (see our gallery) while discovering the secrets to driving on ice, a subject close to my heart…

We’ve waxed lyrical about Northern winters, especially as our offices used to be based in York. All of the girls in the office share one common hatred of this snowy white season and that’s driving in ice or snow. Personally, I’ve struggled with this, going so far as to moving as far down south as I can just to avoid those bitterly cold winters and the inevitable black ice.

Firestone show how easy it is to drive on ice with their seasonal tyres

Firestone show how easy it is to drive on ice with their seasonal tyres

I had an accident when the children were 2 and 6. We’d been foraging in Dalby Forest and the night started to draw in. We bundled up the winter picnic and strapped ourselves into the car. With a deep valley to one side and a road full of ice I didn’t go faster than 15mph. With my heart pounding in my chest, aware that one skid could send us careering to our deaths, I proceeded as carefully as possibly, holding on to my freezing breath. Then, out of nowhere, came a Corsa, careening round the corner, smashing straight into the drivers side and sending us spinning on the single track.

Luckily, my speed meant the car moved very little while the other driver’s collapsed like a concertina. I was 26, my car was sporty and when the forest rangers turned up I got a rollicking for driving dangerously. The other driver was 84 and drunk as a skunk on Christmas tipples but this didn’t matter, it must have been me that was the reckless driver!

The police and the forest rangers were so angry with my supposed dangerous driving they left me and my two children, along with my ex husband, stranded in the middle of a forest in freezing temperatures with no transport for a few hours. We had to walk 3 full miles to a telephone, and it was now way past the children’s bedtime.

When we reached the forest shop, where the warm lights glowed and steam rose from warm cups held by the other driver, they refused to let us in. They wouldn’t even give us some water for our children. Then, as the police breathalised me, they turned to the old man who legged it in a relatives car (he’d rung from the forest hut to ask them to pick him up).

They managed to follow him home and breathalised him then but he’d said he had a whisky to calm his nerves. It took over 2 years to prove his guilt and I’ll never forgive those at Dalby Forest for what they put us through.

Since then I’ve hated driving on ice, not because of my own lack of skill but that of other drivers on the road. I hate the feeling of being out of control and will go to extraordinary lengths to avoid driving when temperatures plummet below zero degrees.

That was until one of our reporters spent the weekend with Firestone, testing their tyres in a bid to rid me of this irrational fear, to make visiting family up North during winter a real possibility, and to give me back the freedom of independent travel whatever the weather.


Our reporter Kevin Robinson at the Firestone event in Hamburg

As women, tyres aren’t usually marketed at us, tyre manufacturers don’t think about our needs or requirements but they should. When I asked around 80% of my female friends admitted to experiencing anxiety when faced with an icy road while my male friends tried to put a brave face on it but admitted it in secret. In Britain, we don’t think of changing our tyres to suit the season but we should, especially with the freak winters we often endure.

In Canada tyre chains and spikes are common place, a driver wouldn’t consider entering winter without a change of all terrain tyres. This trend is picking up pace in the UK but the trend needs to escalate as it could, for the sake of 30 minutes a year, save lives along with the accompanying panic attacks and anxiety.

One company who understand all this is Firestone and their event proved it all. They know the problems and they have a solution to please all. They are currently promoting their music tour and after joining them in Hamburg I highly recommend this. Even if you’re not keen on tyres, you will have the best night of your life with these guys hosting the event.

Here’s some more about it.

The first all weather tyres are launched in just a few days. We suggest putting your order in early, give yourself a Christmas present that’s worth it, remove the stress of driving on snow and ice in 2015 with Firestone. You won’t regret it, they’re definitely on my Christmas list.

New Firestone Multiseason

Firestone breaks into the all-season segment

Firestone announces the launch of its brand new Multiseason tyre, the brand’s first all-season tyre. Bridgestone – which purchased Firestone worldwide in 1988 – has recently invested in Europe to provide the Firestone brand with a highly competitive product and marketing package.

The new Firestone Multiseason tyre is the latest to join the line-up and opens up a new segment for Firestone, thus completing an already wide range of products allowing the young-at-heart the “freedom to drive” and discover in any circumstances. This tyre is aimed at drivers who live in temperate climate zones where winters can be light but still have very unpredictable weather conditions. The Multiseason is an excellent solution for drivers seeking the convenience of having one set of tyres all-year-round and looking for great value for money.

Freedom to drive in all conditions*

The Multiseason is safe when you need it the most by combining an overall easy-going and forgiving character on the road with a readiness for sudden weather change.

Its development started with a base pattern proven strong in wet and snow conditions. Thanks to the right amount of grooves for efficient water evacuation and the use of Nano-ProTech© technology in the compound, the Multiseason provides good wet grip and excellent resistance to hydroplaning, which means that it is able to evacuate large amounts of water quickly so you don’t lose control of your car.

The Multiseason also brings you confidence when driving on snow, as demonstrated by the M+S and 3 Peak Snowflake marks. Thanks to the right pattern to provide solid traction, handling and braking when driving on frost and snow, the Multiseason makes sure that drivers are free to take the road under any conditions.

Being a strong performer in wet and winter conditions is however not a trade-off for enjoying the daily ride! The Multiseason is ideal for manoeuvering in cities and with its linear steering and excellent stability, you can confidently engage any corner, making the drive smooth and comfortable.

 The Multiseason is available in 13 to 16 inches across Europe. The first wave will roll out 9 sized in July 2015 with 16 extra sizes to be launched in the coming year.

Connecting with the young-at-heart

Firestone is reaching out to its young-at-heart target audience through the Firestone Music Tour, an original sponsorship programme with a laid-back feel for major music festivals across Europe in Spain, Germany, France, Poland, Italy and the UK. Firestone will have a strong presence at festival venues – led by a team of Firestone roadies that will criss-cross Europe during the summer. A cool Firestone stand, signage, special attractions, and parking and campsite activities will animate festival sites, supported by a pan-European social media campaign and promotional events in local markets. See you at the Firestone Music Tour!