One of the most terrifying situations that can happen to any driver while behind the wheel is a tire blowout, which is described as a rapid loss of air pressure in an inflatable tire and is oftentimes associated with a booming sound of an explosion. If you’re driving at a high speed or in the middle of a busy road at the time of a tire blowout, the situation may result in a car accident.
According to the National Highway Transportation (NHTSA), tire failure causes approximately 11,000 motor vehicle accidents and 200 fatalities annually in the United States. In 2017 alone, tire blowouts were the main cause of 738 traffic deaths in the country.
The following are the five common causes of tire blowouts:
Poor road conditions – From sharp curbs and potholes to debris on the road (e.g., nail, glass, or a large object), such road conditions can quickly damage, deform, and puncture your tires compared to anything else. On damaged or hazardous roads, drive more slowly than usual to lessen that impact of driving over the road damage or debris, especially if you cannot avoid it.
Low air – Underinflated tires pose a significant risk of blowing out. Insufficient air pressure in the tire can lead to sagging and stretches beyond the shape in which it can properly function to support the vehicle’s weight and load. You must regularly check your tire pressure to ensure they are properly inflated. Remember, do not overinflate your tires because this can also result in a blowout.
Overloading – Every vehicle has a gross vehicle weight rating. Therefore, if you overload your vehicle, excessive weight can put significant stress on your tires. When your vehicle is overweight, your tires become squished and overheated, which can lead to a blowout. Make sure you check the gross weight rating of your vehicle before you load it up if you’re moving or embarking on a road trip.
Extreme heat – Although hot temperatures may not directly cause your tires to rupture, it is a contributing factor for many blowouts, especially if the tires are already in poor condition. The summer season, from May and late August, is known as tire-blowout season since many people overload their vehicles and take road trips, which means driving on the road for long stretches at a time.
Defective tires – Sometimes, a brand-new tire has inherent design or manufacturing defects that can result in a blowout. In addition, improperly installed tires can lead to quicker wear and tear, and eventually a blowout. If you were involved in a car accident caused by a defective tire, you may be able to seek damages from the tire designer or manufacturer in a product liability lawsuit.
If you have been injured in a car accident in Dallas or Houston, TX, call Mathias Raphael PLLC Accident & Injury Lawyers at (214) 739-0100 or fill out our online contact form today to schedule a free initial consultation. We also have an office in Chicago, IL!