Driver error is not the only cause of truck accidents in Houston. The loss of control of a vehicle and even rollovers frequently happen where there is sudden tire failure. Defective tires can blow out. Tires that are inappropriately sized or designed for the vehicle can also blow out. This can occur with little to no warning, and also even if the tires appear to be in very good condition. It can happen with brand new tires. Even when there is no problem with the tires, defective rims can cause blowouts. All too often, truck drivers will focus only on the condition of their tires and will replace their tires frequently, but will continue to operate on defective and bent rims. This is very dangerous.
One of the common causes of tire failure, which can lead to blowouts, its tread separation. When using steel belted radials, it is necessary to properly bond the rubber and the steel together. If the bond fails, the tire can come apart. Tread separation occurs most frequently at higher speeds and at higher temperatures. Several brands of tires have been recalled due to problems with tread separation. Several of the recalls have included tires typically used on SUVs, RVs, and large passenger vans.
Defective Spare Tires
Spare tires often sit unused in a vehicle for years. A tire does not stay in the same condition over time, even when not being used. Even when not in use, tires age and degrade over time. Spare tires that have degraded are particularly dangerous because they often look new and perfectly safe for use. However, spare tires can fail within just a couple of days of use, or even immediately. Most consumers will forget or choose not to replace their spare tire when replacing their other tires. Because of this, the condition of the spare tire is often much worse than the tires actually being used. The fact that spare tires are often in poor condition is particularly dangerous because spare tires are often being called upon in times of stress or emergency.
Healthy Tires That Are Inadequate for the Vehicle Being Used
Not all tires fit all vehicles. Certain vehicle weights require certain kinds of tires, and certain speeds require certain tires. It does not matter how well-manufactured a tire is, it can fail and blowout immediately if it is used on a vehicle that is too heavy for the tire. Dealerships, repair shops, and tire and vehicle manufacturers have a responsibility to match the proper tires to the proper vehicles. However, they often fail to do so.
Poorly and Under-Inflated Tires
Tires that do not have enough air or which have too much air can blowout immediately. Low tire pressure can cause the tire to heat up. This is particularly dangerous if the weather is also hot. Blowouts can cause a vehicle to go out of control, causing an accident. Blowouts can also serve as the trigger to a rollover. Blowouts on any type of vehicle are dangerous but are particularly dangerous when the vehicle has a high center of gravity, such as SUVs, trucks, buses, vans, and other commercial vehicles.
Morrow & Sheppard LLP handles catastrophic vehicle and trucking accidents. If you or a loved one has been injured in a vehicle accident, call us at (713) 489-1206