Highway to Adventure
Spring is finally here! With Summer coming our way, it will only be a matter of time before someone you know says that all too common phrase – “let’s take a road trip!” Planning a road trip means checking the essentials: Full tank of gas, music, snacks, and pillows for naps. There is one major factor that is often overlooked and has the potential to cause you serious injury – your tires.
A car’s tires are often taken for granted until they fail. “When was the last time you walked around your vehicle to visually inspect your tires before setting off?” It is not until the worst happens that we find out our tires were damaged, worn, and unsafe for travel.
Daily Damage – What Your Tires Go Through
Our tires take the most punishment during our daily commute. Pot-holes, curbs, hard braking, accelerating, and weather all have an affect on a tire. Hitting pot-holes or jumping over curbs can create a ball on your tire. Which is like a hernia and needs to be taken care of immediately. If a balled tire is not replaced, you run the risk of having a blow out while driving.
What Does a Blow Out Mean?
A blow out is when a tire gives up. It is much more violent than a flat tire because a blown out tire explodes or falls apart as you are driving. A tire can blow out for different reasons:
The Tire was Too Old
Old rubber will dry out and begin to crack. Tires with cracks can tear open and shred apart while you are driving.
The Tire was Damaged
A ball, air leak, or damaged rim can wear down a tire to its breaking point.
Tires can have recalls just like car parts. There have been cases of defective tires being recalled due to safety risks.
Punctured at High Speed
Driving over sharp objects on the road can cause a tire to puncture – the rapid loss of air can cause the tire to shred itself to pieces and you could lose control of the vehicle.
Blown out tire? – Don’t Panic!
There is little to no warning when a tire decides to give up and blow out. You may hear a rattle or whining noise before a loud explosion rocks your car. When you experience a blow out, the most important thing to remember is to avoid slamming on your brakes. Braking will be your first natural instinct after hearing the terrible noise and feeling the car want to lose control, but you must not touch the brakes! Hitting the brakes can cause you to spin out and completely lose control of the vehicle – causing a serious or even fatal accident.
1. Take Firm Grip of the Steering Wheel
Stay in control of your vehicle and avoid jerking the wheel. Keep the vehicle in a straight line.
2. DO NOT Apply the Brakes
Avoid your natural instinct to apply the brakes. Trying to slow down rapidly could cause the vehicle to spin out. Take your foot off the gas and let it coast to a stop.
3. Pull Over to the Side of the Road
Once at a low speed you can lightly apply the brakes, to stop the car.
4. Turn On Your Hazard Lights
Use your hazard lights to warn cars behind you that you are in trouble – This is vital for avoiding an accident.
Rolling Collateral Damage
A blown tire can still be dangerous even when it’s not on your car. When a tire blows out, it can send chunks of rubber flying through the air. If you happen to be near a vehicle when a tire blows out, the explosion can send chunks of rubber shrapnel in your direction causing damage to your vehicle.
The aftermath from a blown tire will leave rubber road hazards littered all over the highway that can damage your tires. We’ve all seen pieces of tire on the side of the road when we travel. Always be on the look out for these hazards in order to avoid them.
Predict the Unpredictable
Riding on unsafe tires means gambling with your life and the lives of others. The chances of having a blow out are unpredictable – it’s a waiting game to see when those tires decide to give up on you. That is why Davis Law Firm encourages you to get your tires inspected before setting out on a road trip, or for daily commuting. Be aware, be prepared, and travel safe from all of us at Davis Law Firm!