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Truck Tire Blowouts

Bald Tires and Tire Blowouts Lead to Serious Truck Accidents

At the risk of stating the obvious, an operator of a tractor-trailer must ensure that his/her truck has safe tires. Despite the obvious risk posed by a blowout, many truck drivers fail to properly inspect their tires before and during a haul.

Federal regulations require all commercial motor vehicle operators to inspect their tires before heading out on the road and to periodically inspect their rig, including its tires, during a trip. Every tire on the rig must be inspected carefully and this inspection must be tracked in the company's log book. A safe level of tread must be on each tire that goes on any truck. If there is any sign that a tire is balding or has already gone bald, or if the tread appears to be separating from the rest of the tire, the truck driver must immediately replace the tire before heading back out on the road.

Factors that would require a tire to be replaced include:

  • Exposure of the ply or belt material in the sidewall or tread of the tire;
  • Separation of the tread or sidewall;
  • Insufficient tread; and
  • An audible leak.

Blowouts occur every day despite numerous regulations designed to protect the public. Large pieces of tire tread are usually found on most highways. These blowouts may occur because of:

  • An ineffective maintenance policy;
  • A failure on the part of the driver to properly inspect the tires before a trip;
  • Under- or over-inflating the tires;
  • Manufacturer’s defects in the tires;
  • or Heat build-up around the tires.
Constant Vigilance is Necessary to Prevent a Blowout Accident

There are several conditions on the road that can cause a tire to wear down during a long-distance trip. Tires that were in reasonably acceptable condition before the trip may deteriorate significantly and quickly under certain, fairly commonly encountered conditions. A few of the examples that could cause a tire to wear down while on the road could include:

  • Potholes or ruts in the road;
  • Driving over road debris;
  • Extreme cold or hot weather;
  • Poor tire alignment;
  • An overloaded trailer;
  • Aggressive driving or sudden braking, and
  • Speeding.

For this reason, it is imperative that a driver continues to monitor the state of each tire periodically during any trip. A truck driver is susceptible to losing control of his or her truck and colliding with other vehicles as a result of blown tires. A driver may also be at fault for not reacting correctly and following proper protocols when a blowout occurs. Moreover, flying debris at high speeds can be incredibly dangerous for surrounding vehicles. If cars try to avoid this debris by veering out of the way, they may lose control and get into an accident.

Peter Thompson & Associates: New Hampshire’s Truck Accident Experts

At Peter Thompson & Associates we understand how challenging it can be to navigate the aftereffects of a commercial truck accident. Our attorneys will work tirelessly to ensure that you receive the compensation you need and deserve if you have been seriously injured. Call us at 800.804.2004 or fill out our online form to schedule an appointment. We will immediately begin investigating the accident and marshaling all available evidence to protect your rights and interests.