Many of us like to be in control of everything in our lives. Some of us like some control over some things, and some of us only want a little control over a few things. But no one an ever honestly admit that they want no control over anything.
Why? Being out of control can be a scary feeling, and it can lead to dangerous situations.
Many auto accidents are about a lack of control, whether it’s control of the car, control of the mind, control of the body, or control of the decision-making process. Most auto accidents are caused by a loss of control, and one of the top lack-of-control causes stems from poor tire maintenance.
Granted, there are times when tires are poorly made, and even the best maintenance program won’t keep them from going flat or blowing out, but tire issues contribute heavily to auto accidents because of the lack of control that a driver has when a tire blows out. Studies by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) say that underinflated tires can make cars up to three times more likely to get into car crashes than cars with properly inflated tires.
Blowouts can occur with too little air pressure causing the weight of the car to weigh down on the tire, eroding the tread faster than usual (which alone grabs the road less, which inhibits control of the car), and can be caused by faulty tires in the first place, with tread peeling off in long strips and the tire breaking apart because of faulty materials or workmanship.
Blowouts can also be caused by poor roads, such as those with excessive potholes that cars cannot avoid driving through in order to stay in their lanes. Whether there is a legal case for auto-accident accountability will depend a lot on the facts of the particular case and if the actual cause can be determined to be related to tires.
Auto accidents are the most visible sign of a lack of control – whether the driver is drunk, texting, distracted, or lost control due to some mechanical failure of the vehicle. But tires are the biggest source of loss of control from a mechanical perspective, as worn or underinflated tires cause an estimated 11,000 crashes and lead to about 200 deaths per year (or about four per week).
Liability for auto accidents can be difficult to determine because auto accients usually involve a lot of factors with bad tires being just one of them. Before you look into a court case, do not jump on the very firt determination of cause, and make sure you get all the facts by having a quality auto-accident attorney on your side to thoroughly investigate all aspects of the accident to ensure that liability and accountability are correctly placed. Tires may not be the sole cause, but they can certainly be an important factor in an accident, because tires do indeed signal a loss of control – which is the definition of auto accidents.
The moral of the story is, there is a good safety reason why we are encouraged to keep our tires inflated and to get them rotated regularly. Having control over tire maintenance, and keeping it, can be crucial in maintaining control of your car when it is on the road.