Tire Blowouts and Accidents
Updated: May 4
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association (FMCSA), the number of truck accidents in accidents involving large commercial trucks and buses remained fairly consistent between 2018-2022, averaging at about 170,737 commercial vehicle crashes per year. Here’s a quick look at the numbers:
2018: 184,094 crashes
2019: 182,041 crashes
2020: 156,748 crashes
2021: 182,959 crashes
2022: 164,016 crashes
There are many causes for large truck accidents, but one of the most common are vehicle malfunctions. Commercial vehicles are complex vehicles with many mechanical components, and any malfunction in these components can lead to a severe accident. Some of the most common vehicle malfunctions that can cause truck accidents to include brake failure, tire blowouts, and engine problems.
Of the 164,000 serious large truck accidents in 2022, FMCSA officials determined that approximately 6% of the total crashes studied were caused primarily by tire blowouts. When a commercial vehicle does blow a tire, the consequences can be truly devastating not only to the vehicle itself but to the others transiting the highway.
Knowing the physics involved in a tire blowout, tricks to driving through a blowout, and knowing how to avoid one completely can significantly decrease the risk of becoming one of the statistics. Not only that, but knowing some of the hazards that can lead to blown tires can also help prevent accidents.
Hazards relating to blown tires:
Under-inflation can mean having less control over the vehicle and makes tires more susceptible to punctures or cuts.
Over-inflation caused by heat, which can come from excessive speed.
Overloading cargo, which places increased pressure on tires that could cause them to burst.
Normal wear on tires, which requires periodic replacement to avoid blowouts.
Excessive wear on tires resulting in dangerously low tire tread, which increases risk of puncture or exploding.
Mismatched or improperly sized tires for the truck, which can cause uneven tire wear.
Failure to monitor tire recalls, and ensuring replacement when necessary.
Excessive braking, placing additional wear on tires shortening their lifespan.
Hazards on the road such as debris or potholes can also cause tire blowouts.
Most of the issues and malfunctions can be spotted with daily Pre/Post Trip Inspections properly documented Driver Vehicle Inspection Reports (DVIR). Completing Pre/Post Trip Inspections can not only prevent vehicle malfunctions and potential accidents, but can also save your company from thousands of dollars in fines. Not only can a proper Pre/Post Trip Inspection save the company from fines, but it is required by the FMCSA.
We offer Pre/Post Trip Inspection Training online through DOT University! This is a great training to refresh drivers on the proper procedures of a Pre/Post Trip Inspection.
We currently are offering Reasonable Suspicion for Supervisors, Cargo Securement, Defensive Driving, and Pre/Post Trip Inspection online through DOT University! In the coming months, we plan on releasing DOT Compliance Essentials and Appendix A.
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