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Tire Defects and Car Accidents

Tire defects can cause serious car accidents. In recent years, a number of notable tire recalls have been instituted and a number of product liability lawsuits have been filed against tire manufacturers over unsafe tires. Unfortunately, tire defects continue to contribute to thousands of car accidents each year. In some cases, manufacturers know about tire problems and flaws but do not recall the products.

When a tire defect causes an accident, the results can be fatal and tragic. When a tire malfunctions on a highway, especially, a driver may lose control and may crash into other cars and vehicles, causing severe damage and many injuries. In some cases, when tires or parts of tires fly off a vehicle due to a defect, these pieces of tire may strike other vehicles, causing a chain-reaction of collisions and accidents.

One of the most common tire defects is tread separation, which is also one of the most-commonly cited reason for tire recalls. With this type of defect, a flaw in tire design or the manufacturing process causes a tire to separate from the tire tread. When this happens on the road, the driver typically loses control of the car and the vehicle either slams into another car (or object) or rolls over.

Another common cause for tire recalls is tire blowouts. Blowouts occur when a tire is poorly designed or manufactured in such a way that the tire may unexpectedly come apart or may “blow up” after losing pressure. Blowouts are frightening and very sudden. They cause a driver to lose control of the vehicle. Blowouts may also cause pieces of tire to fly at other cars or even pedestrians, causing secondary damage.

In addition to tire design defects, rubber defects may be an issue in many car accidents. All tires are made with a “date code” on the sidewall. This code can help customers understand how old their tires really are. Unfortunately, some unscrupulous tire retailers sell tires that are quite old. Since rubber deteriorates over time, even unused older tires (tires that are 6-10 years or older) may not be completely safe to drive. This is an especially important consideration in Florida, where heat can cause tire rubber to deteriorate more quickly.

It is important to note that tire defects on their own can cause severe car accidents. Even if a driver is experienced and is driving safely, a tire defect can cause a sudden and unpreventable accident through no fault of the driver. In addition to causing car accidents, tire defects also contribute to motorcycle accidents, bus accidents, truck accidents, and SUV accidents.