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Popped Tires and Liability in Auto Accidents

By Renee Nordstrand on December 17, 2020

No driver is a stranger to the concept of a popped tire. As the part of the car that maintains contact with the road, tires are one of the most commonly replaced auto parts. If overused or damaged, they can easily pop and cause a driver to lose control of their vehicle. However, even though they are commonplace, there are several different groups you can hold liable for a popped tire. A tire that suddenly pops could easily cause a severe accident, leading to further property damage and serious injuries. When that happens, you would often assume it was the driver’s fault, but it can actually be far more complicated.

Manufacturing Defects

Tires are a key part of the car. This means that those who design and manufacture tires need to be careful with what they put out into the market. Designers of any auto part should make sure their designs are thoroughly tested before finalizing and approving them to be made. For tires, that means making sure that they can hold up against rough terrain, high and low heats, and maintain shape under the car’s weight. If the design fails any of these tests, then it should be scrapped, and a new design needs to be implemented.

On the other side of the spectrum, if a design is found to work and is approved to be made, then the factory making the tire needs to implement proper quality controls. If even one tire is made improperly with weak or impure metal, worn down treads, or thin rubber, then it could cost someone their life. If a tire pops due to a faulty design or a manufacturing defect, then it becomes a product defect case, and the manufacturer should be held responsible for the part they played in the collision.

Poor Road Maintenance

A tire may be made properly and safely, but that does not mean it won’t pop if it’s met with serious debris or a poorly maintained road. Sharp objects can easily pierce through the rubber, and a deep pothole could apply enough pressure on the tire itself to cause it to pop open. When this happens, you may wonder who could possibly be held liable. Well, the local government of whatever town or city you are in is legally responsible for the maintenance of all roads. This includes clearing debris and fixing cracks and potholes. It may seem intimidating to file a claim against the local government, but the government should be held to the same standards as private citizens, if not higher.

Improper Care

While most drivers are aware, or should be aware, that tires generally need to be changed every 25,000 to 50,000 miles, many will turn to their mechanic for a second opinion or confirmation that their tires are truly worn down. This makes perfect sense, as a mechanic should be an expert in their trade, and thus knows more about cars and car maintenance than the average driver. However, if the mechanic fails to properly diagnose a dangerously worn-down tire or they improperly install a new tire, then they may actually be the ones responsible for the accident.

Recovering Proper Compensation

How ever your accident was caused, you are likely facing extensive injuries, deep medical debt, and a great deal of emotional pain and trauma. Car accidents are never easy to go through, and even “minor” ones can lead to lasting injuries. Victims deserve proper compensation for their pain and suffering. Receiving compensation, however, relies on filing a claim against the right party. When your accident was caused by a popped tire, it can be difficult to know who to hold liable. That is why we at NordstrandBlack PC are willing to launch a full investigation on your behalf once you become one of our clients. For the help of an experienced Santa Barbara car accident attorney, call our firm at (805) 962-2022. Our policy is to help those in need.

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