Reducing the Risk of Tire-Related Car Accidents
Posted By Todd Miner Law || Oct 21, 2015
Todd Miner Law Cares About Your Safety
Many of us here in Orlando remember Sam Behr, who became widely recognized in the Central Florida television market from Allied Discount Tires commercials and his signature “Tires Ain’t Pretty” line. Born in 1927 in Talladega, Ala., Behr starred in commercials for the tire store for 20 years.
Although some younger drivers and automobile aficionados may disagree with Behr, it’s probably safe to say that most of us see tires as just another expense associated with vehicle ownership. But the reality is that the quality and condition of your tires is a serious matter, and cannot be overstated. This is no reason to worry, however. By keeping a close eye on both the inflation and age of your tires, you can significantly reduce the risk of getting into a motor vehicle accident. The best way to do this, is to first understand what happens to a tire as it ages.
What Happens to a Tire as it Ages?
We all know that as you drive your car, its various internal and external components undergo wear-and-tear (they begin to degrade) over time. Your tires are no exception. While driving, especially very quickly, friction is generated between your tires and the road. When friction is generated, heat begins to build up along the surface of the tires. This heat causes the rubber in the tires to wear out over time.
The NHTSA estimates that nearly 10% of all car accidents here in the United States are “tire-related crashes”, meaning they are the result of tire blowout or separation from bald or underinflated tires. Close to 100 people die and 3200 are injured every year from crashes resulting from aged tires. In addition, these risks of experiencing tire problems on the road are exacerbated during adverse or slick weather conditions, such as rain.
While Behr may have been right in saying that “Tires Ain’t Pretty”, the importance of maintaining an optimal appearance and condition cannot be overstated when it comes to your safety. Like us, tires also age over time, irrespective of use as they further degrade due to natural forces. Sometimes, the effect of wear-and-tear are not easily seen. While there may be plenty of thread remaining on the outside, the internal structure may have compromised.
Tips for Minimizing Tire-Related Car Accidents
In order to minimize your risk of getting into a car accident, you should:
- Have your tires rotated every 5,000-10,000 miles
- Have your tires replaced every 40,000 miles
- Inspect your tires regularly for wear-and-tear
As well as the age and the condition of the tires, you must also ensure that they are properly inflated. A recent study conducted by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) demonstrated that almost one in eight vehicles here in the United States has one or more tires that are underinflated by around 25%. When driving with underinflated tires, more heat is generated than normal, which can lead to an increased risk of tire blowout or separation. In addition, underinflated tires can decrease your vehicle’s fuel economy, accelerate the wear-and-tear to your vehicle, and negatively impact the handling of your vehicle.
For more information about this topic, please give us a call as soon as possible.