Tire blowouts and failures commonly cause truck accidents. Defective tire truck accidents can be catastrophic, leading to multiple, severe, or fatal injuries, extensive property damage, and emotional suffering that can last a lifetime. Various factors may contribute to a truck accident, and a defective tire can make it almost impossible for the driver to control the truck.
When a truck driver loses control of their vehicle, it can skid, cross lanes, roll over, or run off the road. Debris can spread across several lanes of traffic creating roadway hazards for other drivers if there is a tire blowout. If you or a loved one was involved in a truck accident where a defective tire malfunction occurs, several parties might potentially be held liable for an accident.
An experienced truck accident attorney knows how to gather evidence and thoroughly investigate claims to help our client obtain maximum compensation in your case.
Common Causes of Tire Defect Accidents
When drivers set out on the road, they rely on their tires for traction, steering, and as a point of contact with the road. Defective tires can lead to a car crash in several ways.
Some of the most common causes of truck accidents are:
- Tire blowout
- Tread separation
- Air pressure problems
- Faulty sidewall construction
- Old or weak rubber
The tread in a tire is the grooved part that comes in contact with the road. When makers use low-grade materials to connect the tread to the tire’s steel belt, the tread can come loose, and the truck driver may lose control and crash. If the de-threading occurs at high speeds, the truck can roll over, causing catastrophic injuries to the driver and anyone else involved in the crash.
Tire blowouts are another well-known cause of truck accidents. Some of the most common causes of tire blowouts include overloading the truck or a sharp object puncturing, tearing, or leaving a massive cut in the tire.
Additional causes of tire blowout include:
- Road hazards
- Excessive tread wear
- Defective tires
- Worn tires
- Underinflated tires
A blowout features a rapid, explosive loss of air pressure that can happen in minutes or slowly accumulate over time. When someone is negligent and fails to replace an underinflated tire that causes an accident, they are liable to pay compensation for injuries and losses sustained by any victims involved.
If a tire blew out and injured you, let a truck accident lawyer pursue full and fair compensation for your injuries.
Liability in Defective Car Accident Cases
Any person or party who designed, manufactured, or sold a defective tire may be liable for design, manufacturing, or warning defects. Design defects happen when there is an issue with the tire’s design. Manufacturing defects occur during the tire’s production and typically affect the entire line of tires.
Warning defects refer to problems with how the maker or seller markets the tire. Suppose a company claims that their tires never need to be rotated, and this lack of rotation causes uneven wear on someone’s tires, leading to an accident.
In that case, the company may be responsible for any damages after a truck accident. It isn’t just about arriving at your destination when you get behind the wheel. It is also essential to make sure you and your passengers get there safely. No matter how safe you drive or how careful you are on the road, accidents still happen.
Some examples of liable parties that may be found responsible for a defective tire accident are:
#1. The Tire Manufacturer
Tire manufacturers must check the quality of each tire before it leaves the manufacturing plant. The tire manufacturer may be held liable for damages caused by a defective tire.
If defective tires lack appropriate tread or wall strength to support the weight of a truck’s load, the tire will wear faster than an adequately manufactured tire. To ensure that a tire can withstand its intended use, tire manufacturers must perform random quality checks or face legal penalties.
#2. The Trucking Company
When truck drivers are transporting loads for a company, many trucking companies will provide insurance to protect their drivers if an accident occurs during the delivery.
A trucking company may be responsible for an accident if they suspect a safety hazard like a tire defect and expect the truck driver to continue driving. Suppose an accident occurs because a trucking company ignores the mechanic’s recommendations and decides to use defective tires despite signs of excess wear. In that case, they may be found liable for failing to replace the tires.
#3. The Tire Distributor
All of a tire distributor’s tires must meet required quality standards. They can do this by checking the tires for obvious defects, providing the correct type of tire to fit their customer’s needs, and properly storing the tires to reduce the risk of wear and tear.
Because it is not uncommon for a truck distributor to provide tires for an entire fleet of trucks, providing companies and customers with a guarantee that the tires they distribute meet the required quality standards is essential to the safety of the driver and others who share the road.
#4. The Truck Driver
Truck drivers can be held responsible for an accident caused by a tire defect if they fail to do a full inspection of the tires before taking a trip. When a truck driver decides to drive their vehicle despite visible signs of a defect, it leaves the driver liable for damages if an accident happens.
Truck drivers may be responsible for an accident if they:
- Fail to respond appropriately to a tire blowout
- Drive while distracted
- Ignore the rules of the road
- Fail to notice a known mechanical problem that can signal a defective tire
#5. The Mechanic Who Installs the Tires
A mechanic who installs tires on a vehicle with readily apparent defects like bulges, blisters, cracking, or cuts in the sidewall, may be held liable for an accident caused by the tire’s defects. A mechanic responsible for maintaining a truck may also be found responsible for an accident caused by a tire defect if they fail to notice the defect over time, like clearly uneven tread, and fail to replace it.
If you or a loved one was involved in a truck accident that occurred due to defective tires, you might have trouble determining who the liable party or parties may be in your case. Our knowledgeable truck accident lawyers will gather evidence on your behalf and determine those to hold accountable for your injuries and losses.
Determining Liability After a Defective Tire Truck Accident
Although a truck driver is on the job when an accident happens, they are not the only party that can bear responsibility if a defective tire causes an accident. If you were in a truck accident and recognized that a defective tire caused it, determining who bears responsibility may require a truck accident lawyer.
Follow these steps to help you determine who may be liable for damages in your truck accident case:
Call your insurance company and report the accident
Report the accident to your insurance company, even if the truck accident wasn’t your fault. In some cases, your insurance company can offer advice and communicate with the truck driver’s insurance company on your behalf. You may need to report any damage to your vehicle, or if your car was totaled, you will need to close the insurance policy.
Your Lawyer will Gather Evidence of Liability
Collecting evidence after a truck accident is crucial to determine the liable party or parties in your case. If you have minor injuries after an accident and physically can take photos and videos of the accident scene, including damage to other vehicles involved in the crash. You should also obtain copies of the police report and be sure to keep all medical records, including hospital bills or receipts for medication.
Your lawyer can also obtain the trucker’s activity logs, including data from the truck’s “black box,” to determine what led to the accident. Your truck accident lawyer may also consult with an accident reconstruction specialist for forensic analysis and interpretation of which factors ultimately caused the crash. In some cases, you may need a court order to make a carrier release the truck for examination.
You need an experienced truck accident lawyer right away
After a defective truck accident, having an attorney on your side who can determine who bears responsibility for your injuries and losses will be your best resource.
Your truck accident lawyer will investigate all factors that may have contributed to the crash and speak with the truck driver to determine if they identified any potential issues before the accident. Your lawyer will also review the trucking company’s insurance policy to see if it might have contributed to the defective tire accident somehow.
A truck accident lawyer may also work with expert witnesses to put together a more accurate picture of what defect or damage occurred to the tire that led to the accident. By hiring an attorney, you will avoid negotiating with the insurance company directly or, worse, saying the wrong thing, which may diminish the value of your settlement award.
One of our lawyers will engage in settlement negotiations with the trucking company, insurance company, or the tire manufacturer to recover the compensation you deserve for damage to your property, injuries, and other losses.
Speak With a Truck Accident Lawyer Today
When an accident occurs due to a defective tire, the accident victim must take swift action and consult with an experienced truck accident lawyer. Our attorneys know how important it is to be proactive in truck accident claims so you can receive compensation for the full value of your injuries and losses.
If you or a loved one suffered an injury from a defective truck accident, you deserve to get the justice you deserve. Contact our office to schedule an initial consultation with one of our truck accident attorneys, who will review your case and advise you on the best next steps.
Defective Tire Accident FAQs
#1. What compensation is available in a defective tire lawsuit?
If you suffered an injury in a defective tire case, you might be eligible to recover compensation for your damages. Damages include lost income, property damage, court fees, emotional pain and suffering, loss of consortium, rehabilitation expense, court fees, loss of consortium, and medical expenses, including future medical care costs.
Every case is unique, and there may be additional forms of compensation you may recover for other losses that resulted from the accident. In accidents where the defendant’s conduct was especially wanton or reckless, the judge may award punitive damages to deter others from behaving similarly in the future.
#2. How can an attorney prove that a defective tire caused an accident?
When someone receives an injury in a truck accident due to a defective tire, they can file a personal injury or product liability claim. In product liability cases, your attorney will not have to prove that the tire manufacturer or seller was negligent; however, it must also be apparent that the defendant was responsible for selling, designing, manufacturing, or distributing a product that had an obvious defect at the time of sale.
The injured plaintiff is responsible for proving the following to recover damages in product liability cases:
- The defendant designed, manufactured, distributed, or sold a defective product
- When the product left the defendant’s possession, it had an obvious defect
- The plaintiff used the product was reasonably
- The product defect injured the plaintiff
If a loved one died in an accident involving a defective tire, you might consider filing a wrongful death claim on their behalf. In most cases, your attorney will need to obtain expert testimony to show that an accident happened because of a tire defect.
After your attorney sends the expert or engineer information about the accident and any remaining parts of the defective tire, the expert will provide their opinion on what factors contributed to the accident.
#3. Why is it essential to retain a field expert in tire defect cases?
Identifying whether a defective tire contributed to an accident takes time and litigation against tire manufacturers or distributors, which can become complicated. A forensic, reconstruction, or biomechanical expert can begin inspecting the truck involved in the accident and identify which factors led to the crash.
#4. What should I do if tire separation caused my accident?
If tire separation caused your accident, the first thing you should do is seek medical care as soon as possible. Gather evidence of the accident scene by taking photos or videos of damage sustained to all vehicles involved in the collision. Obtain a copy of the police report and keep copies of all medical records and evidence. Finally, contact an experienced truck accident lawyer who will investigate the case on your behalf and help you determine the next steps.
#5. When should I hire a defective tire accident lawyer?
Having an experienced defective tire accident lawyer on your side after a collision with a truck driver is invaluable. Legal paperwork in a product liability lawsuit for a defective tire after a truck accident is typically complex.
There are strict deadlines, and the insurance company often tries to deny liability or blame the victim. The trucking or tire manufacturing company will have a team of skilled legal representatives to fight on their behalf. Hiring an attorney to represent your case will level the playing field and increase your chances of obtaining a successful settlement.