Tread separation occurs when the tread of the tire separates from the tire body. It might be related to difficulty adhering to steel used in the tire, and could be a problem for passenger vehicles and light trucks, as well as larger commercial vehicles.
It can occur as the result of a design or manufacturing defect as well as other factors. The result might be a tire blowout that can cause a driver to lose control of the vehicle, especially when traveling at higher speeds. This might result in serious accidents and injury.
Causes of Tread Separation
There are several causes of tread separation, some which can be prevented with proper tire maintenance and inspection. Some which may be due to manufacturing defects. The following scenarios may lead to tread separation and resulting tire failure.
- Over- or under-inflation: When a tire is overly inflated, tire pressure is elevated and may cause excessive heat generation, which is a contributing factor. In addition, tires may wear unevenly when overly inflated. Meanwhile, an underinflated tire might put pressure on the sidewalls, which can lead to separation of the tire’s tread.
- Careless driving: Driving carelessly and hitting potholes at excessive speeds can cause enough force to result in tread separation.
- Improper flat repairs: Improperly plugged and patched tires can contribute as well.
- Manufacturer’s defect: When manufacturers make poorly designed or manufactured tires, it might lead to a defect. Sometimes these defects are identified and the tire is subject to a recall. However, in some cases the tire owner is unaware of the defect and continues to drive on the damaged tire. Other times it may be too late before the manufacturer issues a recall.
Detecting a Potential Tread Separation
In order to protect yourself from potential tread separation in your tires, you should visually inspect them at regular intervals. Early warning signs that a separation may occur include bumps or bubbles on the tire itself. You may be able to feel the effects of a bump while driving or you might hear a thumping sound.
Other indications of a tire that might be susceptible to separated tread, according to Consumer Reports, are the following.
If you feel a thumping or vibration in your tire or otherwise notice that the vehicle is not riding as it should, examine the tires visually yourself and use your hands to feel for any bumps or deformities that might signal a defect. Seek professional help from a mechanic or tire care professional to make sure you correctly identify whether there is a problem with your tires, and what that problem might be.
Product Liability for Tread Separation-related Accidents
Tire manufacturers are responsible for the safety of their products. When an accident occurs as the result of a defective tire, the manufacturer may be liable for damages. If you’ve been in an accident due to tread separation, you may be eligible for compensation for damages.
You must link your accident to the tire defect and establish the damages you’ve suffered. Seeking the help of a law firm that handles product liability law and defective tire cases will lighten the burden of navigating the legal process yourself.
Chalik and Chalik helps consumers injured because their tires or those on another vehicle were defective and caused an accident. Call 855-529-0269 or use our contact page to set up your free consultation.