Brian White | March 17, 2022 | Car Accidents
According to the U.S. National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), vehicle problems are the least common causes of accidents. Driver error, environmental conditions, and “other” causes result in more accidents than equipment breakdowns.
But with the enormous number of traffic accidents in the U.S., vehicle problems still cause about 44,000 car accidents every year. Of these, about 15,000 crashes result from tire or wheel-related problems.
Here is what happens in a tire blowout accident in Houston.
Causes of Tire Blowout Accidents
Tires can fail for many reasons. Typically, they fail because of tire wear. But tire blowout accidents can also happen due to product defects or even as the result of damage from a car accident.
Some common causes of tire blowout accidents include:
Tires have a rated lifetime that depends on their construction. Manufacturers will tell you the tire’s lifetime when you buy it. Most tires last between 50,000 and 75,000 miles.
As a tire wears, it loses tread. The tire material also gets brittle and can crack. Together, these factors weaken the tire significantly. A compromised tire can suddenly fail, causing the tire to blow out.
Even a new tire can rupture if it gets punctured. The layering used to manufacture tires is intended to strengthen the tire and minimize the risk of a blowout when it gets punctured. But a large puncture can cause an immediate blowout.
A tire blowout does not always precede an accident. Sometimes, the accident happens first, then the tire blows out, making the accident worse. For example, a collision could damage a tire, causing it to blow out. The car then rolls over due to the blowout. The blowout did not cause the accident, but it worsened the damage and injuries resulting from the accident.
In the early 2000s, Bridgestone/Firestone SUV tires began to fail. These failures killed over 100 people and injured over 400 more.
The problem was traced to a manufacturing plant. This plant applied adhesive to the tires incorrectly and as a result, the layers in the tire separated. This caused sudden blowouts under emergency conditions like swerves and hard stops.
Tire defects can happen in the design, manufacture, or warnings associated with the tire.
Tire Blowout Accidents
When you lose a tire, your car develops several issues, including:
One wheel will stop rolling and begin to drag. This can pull the vehicle to one side. It can also cause the car to suddenly lose speed.
The driver will struggle to bring the car under control and stop it safely. The car could swerve into adjacent cars or get hit from behind.
The loss of the tire will cause the car to tilt. In cars, this will usually not affect the vehicle. But in taller vehicles with a higher center of gravity, the loss of a tire can cause significant tilt. This tilt may even be so significant that it causes the vehicle to roll over.
The vehicles most susceptible to rollovers are SUVs. However, pickup trucks, full-size vans, and minivans can also roll over after a tire blowout.
Liability for Tire Blowout Accidents
Tire blowout accidents can cause serious injuries. In addition to a collision, a tire blowout can cause a car to roll over. In a rollover accident, you could suffer head and back injuries as you fly around the interior of the vehicle. The roof could collapse, crushing you. The windshield could shatter, showering you with glass shards.
The extent of the injuries resulting from a tire blowout accident can lead you to seek compensation from those who might carry responsibility for the tire malfunction. Some of the parties who might bear liability for a tire blowout accident include:
If a tire fails because of a defect, the manufacturer bears liability for your injuries. Defects include:
A tire has a design defect if it has no safe use. In other words, if a tire is dangerous even though it is manufactured perfectly, it has a design defect.
A manufacturing defect happens when a problem occurs during construction that makes an otherwise safe tire unsafe to use. The existence of a defect means that something happened during manufacturing that made it prone to failure. The defective adhesive layer in the Bridgestone/Firestone cases is an example of a manufacturing defect.
A warning defect happens when a product has a safe use and a hazardous use, and the warnings fail to explain these uses.
If the tire shop was negligent in installing or repairing your tires, the tire shop might bear liability for your accident. To prove negligence, you must show the tire shop failed to exercise reasonable care in performing its job, among other elements. This means sticking to industry standards and any other procedures used by a reasonably prudent tire shop.
Suppose your blowout accident happened because you hit something in the road. If you know how that debris ended up on the road, you can pursue compensation from those responsible.
The most common scenario where this happens is a construction company that leaves something in the road or drops something in the road while working on it.
You could receive compensation from another driver if they caused an accident that damaged your tire.
Compensation for Tire Blowout Accidents
Compensation for injuries after an accident caused by someone else will cover your economic and non-economic damages. Your economic damages include the cost of medical treatments and lost wages.
Non-economic damages compensate you for the diminishment in your quality of life. Some examples include:
- Mental anguish
- Reduction in the enjoyment of life
- Inability to participate in activities like driving or dressing
Tire blowout accidents increase the risk of a rollover accident, which can produce devastating injuries.
Contact the Houston Car Accident Lawyers at Attorney Brian White Personal Injury Lawyers For Help
Attorney Brian White Personal Injury Lawyers
3120 Southwest Freeway, Suite 350
Houston, TX 77098
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Houston, TX 77029
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Houston, TX 77054