Catastrophic Accidents Caused by Blown out Vehicle Tires

By October 15, 2007Traffic Safety

Tire blowouts are sometimes caused by defective tires and are a very serious road hazard. Tire blowouts often result in vehicle collisions causing injuries and even fatalities. The remnants of blown truck tire scattered across a highway are the signs that this is not an uncommon occurrence,
Debris littering the highways cause over 25,000 accidents and at least 100 deaths in the United States and Canada each year. A Foundation for Traffic Safety reported that blown tire pieces are the number one road debris. Various studies have shown that most tire and scrap rubber debris on the roadways is caused by under inflated tires, which makes tires susceptible to cuts and flats.
Most tire-related accidents are caused by improper tire inflation. These accidents are avoidable demonstrate the need to maintain the proper tire inflation.The air inside the tire carries the weight of the vehicle, absorbs shock and keeps the tire in its proper shape so it can perform as designed. This is the single most critical factor for getting the safest and longest life out of tires. Tires flex when they roll, bending the tire’s rubber and steel cords. The flexing generates heat, and tire wear is the result of friction created between the road’s surface and the tread as the tire rolls along
When tires are over-inflated, excessive wear occurs at the center of the tread because it will bear the majority of the vehicle’s weight. Over-inflated tires tend to not absorb road hazards like debris in the road and potholes, increasing the risk of sustaining a puncture or impact damage.
Tire pressure should only be checked when a tire is cold (before a vehicle is driven or has been driven less than a mile). Once a vehicle has been driven, tires warm up and there is an increase in air pressure resulting in an inaccurate reading. After being driven, a “hot” tire can take several hours to cool down .Tire pressure should be checked regularly. Alignment also needs to be checked on a regular basis.
When inspecting your tires, rub your hand along the tread and sidewalls to feel for problems like flat spots, cuts, shoulder wear, bulges, sidewall damage, etc. is a good way to check for obvious problems. These simple and quick checks can help you avoid, or at least minimize the number of accidents caused by defective tires. All drivers should stop immediately once a tire problem is detected. Even continuing on to the nearest rest stop or weigh station can be dangerous. Making sure your tires are properly inflated just may save your life and the lives of those traveling the highways with you.