Factors Contributing to Large Truck Tire Blowouts
Large trucking companies are required by law to conduct inspections of their tires on a routine basis, conduct inspections of their tires before leaving on a delivery, and conduct inspections of their tires while their trucks are out on the road after each day. It is largely because they fail to conduct these inspections rigorously that our highways are littered with shredded treads and major accidents can be found on an almost-daily basis.
Meanwhile, other factors may trigger a tire failure and trucking companies will hide behind these causes in order to get claims against them dismissed for lack of evidence. Below, we’ll discuss factors that may play a role in trucking company tire failures and how they are used to muddy the waters when it comes to litigation.
Potholes / Road Debris / Road Conditions
An accident involving a large commercial truck and tire failure will come down to proving that either trucking company’s negligence or the tire manufacturer’s negligence was responsible for the accident. However, there are cases when neither is to blame. Instead, some road condition or road debris was more responsible than the trucking company. There are also cases where the trucking company tries to hide its own responsibility by claiming that road debris, a pothole, or some other road condition caused the accident.
Underinflating or Overinflating the Tires
It is the sole responsibility of the trucking company to ensure that the tires are properly inflated. That is why when a tire manufacturer is sued, they point the finger at the trucking company, claiming that the tires were not properly inflated. It may be difficult for a plaintiff to prove that the tires were or were not properly inflated after the blowout occurred.
It is the responsibility of the trucking company to ensure that the truck is properly loaded and not overstuffed with cargo. While heavy-duty tires can carry tremendous loads, there is a limit.
Tire Maintenance Factors
Tire maintenance can contribute to a blowout and, when it does, the trucking company is liable. Trucking companies are expected to ensure that:
- Tires are properly inflated;
- Tires have sufficient treads;
- Tires are not displaying signs of sidewall distress;
- Tires are the proper size for the truck; and
- The tires have not been previously recalled.
When Tire Manufacturers are Liable
Above, several reasons are listed why a trucking company might be liable for a tire blowout accident. However, there are several cases in which the tire’s manufacturer might also be liable. Generally, the plaintiff must show that the tire either failed because of a design defect or a manufacturing defect. One possible reason for a design defect might be that the tire needs to be able to handle close proximity to the engine and not fail when exposed to heat over long distances. A very small manufacturing defect can also result in tire failure.
Talk to a Tire Lawsuit Attorney Today
If a tire has been involved in an accident that caused you injury, the Coral Gables tire defect attorneys at Halpern, Santos & Pinkert have the skill you need to ensure you’re compensated fairly. Talk to us today.