Highway truck accidents are a serious concern for this country. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's fatality facts can leave a hair-raising effect on you. You drive on the highway with your family members, we all do. But no matter how safe you drive, a large truck can collide with your car.
It's frightening and disappointing that the highways are no longer safe for us. Passenger vehicle owners are not the only ones, who are at risk. The truck drivers and the trucking companies are facing risks too.
Are you a truck driver?
There’re not many pieces of advice that I can give to a passenger vehicle driver. Drive safe, look out for a truck's blind spot, and that's all. But if you are a truck driver and reading this article, I have plenty of them for you. You need to figure out the reasons for truck accidents. Since I don't have the time and space to discuss all of them, I choose only one; tire blowout.
Why tire blowouts happen?
Temperature is held responsible for tire blowouts. From late spring to early fall, the outside temperature stays hottest. Temperature is one among many reasons for tire blowout. There are other, perhaps more penetrating reasons.
A vehicle being overloaded can damage its tires. Truck drivers mistakenly think their pickup trucks can carry weight to their full capacity. The tires of such trucks may not support the load. Underinflated tires can aggravate this problem.
To avoid overloading, find the gross vehicular weight rating (GVW) of your vehicle. Along with that, look for the recommended tire pressure. Both have optimum ranges; crossing those ranges translates to putting extra load on the truck’s tires. The "maximum load" and the "optimum load" are different; that's all for a truck driver to understand.
All the time a truck slams into a pothole, it seriously injures its tires. The low quality rubber, used to manufacture tires these days, worsens this problem. When a tire is damaged due to potholes and other hazards on the driveway, its internals become frayed. The severity of the damage determines whether the tire can be used again. If the pothole somehow pierces through layers of fabric and rubber, the tire will be completely unusable.
Sometimes, truck drivers don't repair the tire's sidewall. They put up with all the damages that could lead to a slow death of the tire. That's a mistake, which all truck drivers need to avoid.
The problem is, the driver remains clueless as a tire slowly inches forward to its death. Heavy loads can aggravate this problem. If a cargo truck has its tires damaged but the driver still puts heavy loads on it, the already damaged tires would be stressed further, maybe beyond their limits.
Hence, late repair is same as no repair. The truck driver needs to check the conditions of the tires every once in a while. Upon finding any leak or frayed sidewall in any of them, he needs to replace the tire with a new one and take the old one to a mechanic.
Dangers of tire blowout
A big truck tire blowout can result in collisions and rollovers, which might cause fatal injuries. When the tire blows out, it rips apart into shards and the propelling force hurls it to other vehicles on the road, causing a serious accident.
A blowout generates simulation and an immense force. It also causes the truck to become unstable and go off course. The driver faces difficulty fixing all these. He might lose control, if he does, a collision with another large truck or a passenger vehicle is inevitable.
The trailer of an unstable truck might unexpectedly open and release the cargo. Tire blowout may also cause fellow driver panic. Other motorists might panic and tip over causing one of them to collide with another.
Taking care of the tires means taking care of yourself and your truck. So take a very good care of the tires.