When planning a trip, responsible drivers give their car a “check-up”, which includes having the oil changed and fluids checked. They also should check the tread on the tires and ensure the air pressure is adequate.
Despite all precautions, a tire still can explode and lead to a collision. When tires blowout or suddenly lose air pressure accidents follow, injuries may occur and damages are common. In such instances soliciting the advice of an experienced tire defect attorney can help to protect your rights and help you to understand your legal options.
In a tire the rubber that surrounds the exterior covers layers of fabric. Technically, tires are made of the bead, sidewall, tread and belt. The bead is a steel cable that strengthens the tire, and the sidewall keeps the tire together. Tread, or grooves in the rubber, provides traction. While steel belts striped throughout the rubber and fabric give more structure and resistance to puncture and rupture.
Types of Tire Defects
Tire Tread Separation - The tread and the belt can suddenly separate from the tire while traveling at highway speeds, often leading to a blowout. Steel-belted tires can be prone to this defect from failure of the steel and rubber to adequately adhere.
Tire Rim Explosions - Fixing a flat with poor quality patching can cause a tire to suddenly explode causing blindness, facial lacerations, and other serious injury or death. If the tire was punctured and then fixed with a sealant containing propane or butane, a spark can ignite such an explosion.
Weak Bead Failures -Weak bead wirings can result in an explosion if the tire has too much air pressure.
Sidewall Failures -While inflating the tire, a zipper may fail, resulting in the tire exploding.
In 2000, The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration passed the TREAD Act (Transportation Recall Enhancement, Accountability, and Documentation Act), requiring a tire manufacturer to provide adequate warnings about tires, to provide safety information to the consumer, and issue recalls concerning tire defects.
Any tire blowout can lead to loss of control. In SUVs, a sudden blowout can lead to a rollover and cave-in of the roof, crushing the occupants. Serious head injuries, internal injuries, broken limbs, severe lacerations, amputation, permanent scarring, spinal injuries or paralysis, concussions, and death can occur.
An exploding tire can cause serious trauma to anyone in the immediate vicinity of the explosion. Severe facial lacerations, chest injuries, and even decapitation have been known to occur.
Obviously, the tire manufacturer may be held responsible for the manufacture or production of a defective tire, or employing designers who incorporated inferior materials or relied on faulty designs for the product. The difficulty is in proving the designer and/or manufacturer is legally liable for the injuries. An experienced tire defect lawyer may be able to establish the following:
The design of the tire that caused the injury was unreasonably dangerous and foreseeable by the manufacturer.
Or the tire was manufactured with a defect, not in accordance with the design.
The tire was being used in a way it was intended to be used. For instance, the motorist was not abusing the tires by road racing or traveling on unpaved roadways for long stretches.
The tire was not substantially altered since leaving the manufacturer or place of sale.
If these conditions are met, the injured party need not show that the manufacturer or designer was negligent but may be held liable for the injuries that occurred.
Working with a qualified attorney will ensure that your legal rights are protected and that you receive the maximum compensation that you deserve under the law.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident from a sudden tire blowout or explosion we want to hear your story. These cases often involve complex legal issues that only a competent tire defect lawyer should handle.