Has a tire caused you serious injury?

Passenger motor vehicles are subject to common tire defects that can result in accidents. The legal recourse to follow in such injury accidents falls under the category of product liability where the vehicle manufacturer, tire maker, and/or tire distributors can be responsible for manufacturing, selling, or distributing defective tires.

Perhaps you’ve read about them in the news. Recent recalls of defective tires have been performed by several tire makers, including Firestone, Cooper, Goodyear, Dunlop, Continental and General.

The safety of passengers and even their lives are at stake when a tire is defective; they must be able to function properly and with reliability. Defective and unsafe tires may result in failures, such as tread separation, belt adhesion failure, blowouts, and tire/rim explosions.

Recently, a wheel flew off a northbound car on Route 17 in Ramsey and ripped through the windshield of a southbound bus – seriously injuring a passenger. How does this happen? When questioned, the National Safety Council didn’t even have an answer.

However, there are cases of loose tire accidents that took place recently and from the past, including:

  • In April, 2014 a tire from a boat trailer broke loose in upstate New York, bounced into the opposite lane of traffic and slammed into the windshield and roof of a vehicle – killing the woman; her baby daughter and a 4-year old she was caring for were injured.
  • Also in April 2014, two Indiana women were killed when a rear wheel broke loose from their vehicle, causing their car to flip.
  • In April 2009 a Connecticut man was killed and his wife injured when a loose tie crashed through the roof and windshield of their vehicle on the Garden State Parkway.
  • Back in 1994, an 18-year old high school senior, on his way into a fast foods restaurant, was fatally struck by a 200-pound tire that fell off a tractor-trailer.
  • In 1994 or 1995, a New York woman escaped serious injury when a tire flew off a vehicle, bounced over the median and smashed her windshield.

Most recently, in May 2014, a bus accident in Ramsey was caused when a wheel fell off a passenger vehicle, bounced across the highway into the path of another bus carrying 50 passengers. One passenger was seriously injured when the wheel smashed through the windshield. The driver and two others were also injured.

The Police chief for the Ramsey Police Department said, “When changing tires, make sure the bolts and lug nuts are secure.”

There are many hazards on our roads that could cause damage to tires and motor vehicles. Tire damage isn’t always the fault of the manufacturer or distributor as road obstacles like glass, nails, potholes, metal, or construction debris.

Drivers should always be aware of their surrounds for the safety of themselves, their passengers, and everyone else around them on the highways.

I hope the passengers that were injured have a speedy and complete recovery.

Personal injuries and deaths from defective tires are common in accidents that follow tire product failures. The aftermath of passenger motor vehicle accidents that originate from defective tires can be painful, expensive, and traumatic.

Death of a loved one, extensive medical treatment, ensuing bills for treatment of accident injuries, loss of companionship, loss of income, and pain and suffering, are personal injuries that can be recovered to some extent by an experienced personal injury attorney.

Contact New Jersey’s top Product Liability law firm to get more information about defective products and to help you determine if you have a case.