Today’s vehicles are built with more safety features than ever before. Unfortunately, these innovations can still fail to protect us from one of the most overlooked parts of our cars: the tires. Tires require regular inspection and maintenance, but even the newest, most trusted tires sometimes fail without warning. To protect yourself and your passengers, you must understand how tires fail and what you can do to help prevent a tire-related tragedy.
Defective Tire Accident Statistics
The Austin (TX) American Statesman (2/11, Subscription Publication, 361K) reports that more motor vehicle fatalities are attributable to defective tires than to cellphone-related distracted driving, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Per the American Statesmen, the “NHTSA says that over 700 people die per year in crashes due to failed tires,” while “cellphone-related deaths have not exceeded 500 in any year” of the “past six years for which NHTSA has released data.”
The NHTSA claims that defective tires can be related to tire problems such as blowouts or flat tires, tire or wheel deficiency, tire or wheel failure, and tire degradation. Poor tire maintenance is a leading cause of tire-related crashes, and one we can all avoid. To help protect yourself, make sure that your tires always have enough air and are rotated and balanced on a regular basis. Pay attention to the amount of tread on your tires as well. Driving with low tread increases the risk of losing traction, especially on wet or icy roads. As a general rule, tires worn down to 2/32 of an inch are unsafe to drive on. Lastly, when possible, plan your route to avoid bad roads with uneven lanes and potholes, which can increase the risk of tire failure over time.
If you or a loved one is involved in a crash caused by a defective tire, you need to seek help immediately from an attorney experienced in auto accident cases. The law firm of Pittman, Dutton & Hellums is passionate about representing victims of defective tires, and we want to help. If you have been in an accident related to a defective tire, please call us today at (205) 322-8880. We have a dedicated team of personal injury attorneys ready to consult with you for no cost and no obligation.