Rapidly Changing Temperatures Could Affect Your Tires
With the weather rapidly warming across the state, experts warn that the sudden change in temperature could cause vehicles to lose air pressure in their tires—and that can lead to serious accidents.
According to a report by wmcactionsnews5.com in Memphis, Tennessee, it’s important for drivers to always check their tire pressure before they start their cars. In addition, drivers should never ignore any warning lights that indicate the pressure in their tires is low.
Driving a vehicle with under or over-inflated tires makes you more likely to suffer a blowout, which can make your vehicle extremely difficult to control.
A driver education specialist in Memphis suggests that if you do suffer a blowout while behind the wheel, you should stay calm and never slam on your brakes, as this can actually make it even more difficult to control your vehicle.
Instead, she recommends that you immediately take your foot off the gas and allow your vehicle’s speed to gradually drop. With your foot off the gas and brakes, concentrate on maintaining control of your vehicle as it naturally loses acceleration and begins to slow down.
The Memphis car accident attorneys at Matt Hardin Law know that tire blowouts are a leading cause of preventable accidents, and we hope all Tennesseans take this advice to heart before heading out on the state’s roadways this spring.
What Causes Tire Blowouts?
Dealing a tire blowout at high speeds puts you and your loved ones at significant risk of being involved in an accident. Some of the most common causes of tire blowouts include:
- Underinflated tires
As the article above indicates, underinflated tires is one of the main risk factors when it comes to suffering tire blowouts. Without sufficient air pressure, the inside of the tire, which includes fabric, steel, rubber, and composite materials—can flex and bend far beyond their limits, and that can lead to the structure of the tire eventually giving way and failing. When that happens, the tire bursts, causing a vehicle to become nearly uncontrollable, especially at high speeds.
- Overloaded vehicles
Even properly inflated tires are susceptible to blowouts when they’re supporting an overloaded vehicle. Some drivers overestimate the amount of cargo their vehicles can carry, but overloading a car by even a few hundred pounds can put significant stress on the tires. To find out how much a vehicle can safely carry, drivers should consult their manual to find their vehicle’s Gross Vehicular Weight Rating. This information is also often inside the vehicle on the driver’s side door.
- Road damage and debris
Most tires are designed to roll over smooth surfaces, and any sudden stress or impact with a sharp or irregular object or surface can puncture them. Large potholes are especially hazardous for tires, as the tire dropping inside the hole, along with the jagged edges of the busted concrete or asphalt, can combine to cause the tire to burst. Roadway debris such as glass, nails, and large objects can also cause blowouts.
- Worn out tread and rubber
Tires have a shelf life of around 12,000 to 15,000 miles. Over time, they start to lose not only their tread, but also the support structures that maintain their shape. When these materials begin to break apart or sag under the weight of the vehicle, it can cause sudden blowouts, even if no other circumstances occur that would normally cause a tire to fail.
At Matt Hardin Law, our Memphis car accident lawyers have seen the damage that blowouts can cause not only to vehicles, but also to their drivers and passengers. That’s why it’s so vital for all drivers to keep a close eye on their tire pressure and never drive long distances on underinflated or aging tires that need to be replaced.
If you or someone you love was injured in a car accident caused by another person’s negligence—including their failure to properly inflate or replace their tires—you may be eligible for compensation. Contact our law firm today by dialing (901) 201-4478 or filling out a free online form.