Supported by Toyota Motors South Africa (TMSA), the first Gals Garage Tyre Safety Workshop of 2021, took place in Gauteng recently. Although all COVID regulations had been taken into account, organizers of the event took further precautions by hosting the Workshop over a few 4-hour sessions at different venues, thereby giving guests the added comfort of knowing their health had been taking into consideration.
The Gals Garage Tyre Safety Workshop not only allowed guests to simulate a flat tyre scenario but also gave them an opportunity to test drive the Toyota Urban Cruiser, Toyota Starlet and one of 2 Toyota Agya vehicles.
It used to be safe to ask a stranger to assist you to change your flat tyre but times have changed, so it is to every woman’s benefit to know how to do so herself.- FOUNDER, GALS GARAGE WORKSHOPS
It used to be safe to ask a stranger to assist you to change your flat tyre but times have changed, so it is to every woman’s benefit to know how to do so herself.– FOUNDER, GALS GARAGE WORKSHOPS
Kicking off with an interactive discussion about tyre rotation, wheel alignment, and wheel balancing, the important topic of knowing how to change a tyre led to a few of the ladies relating personal stories about the inconveniences and dangers of being stuck on the side of the road.
It is important to align the jack with the car-jack point. If you jack the vehicle at any other point, the car’s weight may cause damage to its frame.– FOUNDER, GALS GARAGE WORKSHOPS
Excited about learning this basic life skill, the ladies gathered around the 2 Toyota Agya vehicles and set about changing a tyre; all the while talking about causes of a flat tyre, how to identify you have a flat tyre (while driving), and safety measure to adhere to in the event of a flat tyre. These include pulling out of traffic as slowly as is safely possible, parking on a flat surface where possible, ensuring that the handbrake is engaged (either in gear in manual transmission or Park if in an automatic).
“In some instances, it is advisable to place a brick in front or behind one of the other tyres to further secure the vehicle,” Vuyi mentioned, “but you must remove these before you leave so as not to cause damage to another motorist’s vehicle, particularly at night when visibility is generally reduced”.
Another important element under discussion was identifying the optimal position to place the red reflective triangle which serves as a warning for other motorists, as well as learning the correct names of each of the tools required to successfully change a flat tyre – wheel spanner, nut-lock, car jack, reflective red triangle, spare tyre.
In some instances, it is advisable to place a brick in front or behind one of the other tyres but you must remove these before you leave.– Founder, GALS GARAGE WORKSHOPs
It came as a surprise to some of the ladies that all cars have a car ‘jack point and that it is the safest location to position the car jack. By running their fingers along the edge of the bottom of the body of the car, the ladies discovered either one or two jack-points positioned either a short distance behind the front wheels or positioned a short distance in front of the rear wheels.
“It is important to align the jack with the car-jack point. If you jack the vehicle at any other point, the car’s weight may cause damage to its frame or, the jack may slip off, causing the vehicle to crash to the ground. Either way, this could result in serious injury to yourself and expensive damage to the car,” Vuyi said.
I will never forget the day my children and I nearly spent a night at the side of the road just because I did not know to change a flat tyre.– GUEST, GALS GARAGE TYRE SAFETY WORKSHOP
To their surprise, the ladies accurately and safety completed the tyre change exercise in less time than they had anticipated. Most could barely believe how simple the task was.
“I will never forget the day my children and I nearly spent a night at the side of the road just because I did not know to change a flat tyre. Looking back I feel annoyed with myself because I put us in unnecessary danger yet here I am, doing this simple thing in 20 minutes!” remarked one of the guests.
When it came to test driving the various Toyotas on display, the Starlet proved to be a clear favourite among the ladies. “It stylish, spacious, comfortable to drive and quite spacious,” one guest remarked.
“The Agya is much bigger than it looks”, remarked one of the guests. “When I first glanced at it, I felt it was a ‘toy’ but, out of curiosity, I drove it and now I’m surprisingly impressed. I would love to have it as my weekday car because it would be easy to park,” she continued.
Some car salesmen can be very pushy, but his job is to listen to my needs and give me the best product which fits my budget.– Guest, gals Garage Tyre Safety Workshop
Many of the ladies expressed appreciation that they had had an opportunity to test drive the Toyota vehicles in the comfort of their environment because they find car dealerships intimidating.
“I am not looking forward to buying a car because some car salesmen can be very pushy,” one lady said. “I feel that car salesmen judge women based on appearance and I am not about to make the extra effort just so the salesman will want to approach me when I walk into a dealership. His job is to listen to my needs and give me the best product which fits my budget – not to make me feel unknowledgeable and small,” she concluded.
ABOUT GALS GARAGE WORKSHOPS
Gals Garage Workshops, Because Women Deserve Better, was conceptualized and launched in 2016 by motoring journalist, Vuyi Mpofu when she identified a gap in the market to engage with female motorists. The Workshops aim to inform, educate and empower female motorists about the nuances of various elements of vehicles and serve to encourage women to become aware of the vehicle components which affect everyday driving safety.
Other than the Tyre Safety Workshops, the Gals Garage brand offers a variety of courses being:
- Basic Car Care
- BasicSelf Defense
- Pregnancy and Infant in-car safety
- Introduction to off-road driving
- Glam Gals Getaways