You’ve probably seen it before: cars spun out on the side of the highway, with shredded tires scattered everywhere. This situation can happen to anyone. Knowing what to do in this highway emergency can help save your life. Here are some essential guidelines to help you be prepared!
What Causes Tire Failure?
Insufficient air is the number one cause of tire failure, but impact damage (striking the curb) and cuts can also produce the same situation. Worn and expired tires are much more likely to suddenly fail, which is especially dangerous out on the highway. Knowing when your car is due for tire replacement (and acting accordingly) will protect you from most of these emergencies.
What Should I Do if My Tire Blows Out?
In situations like these, gut reactions can actually be fatal. If you have a tire blowout or a split tire, try to fight the typical responses, such as…
- Slamming the Brakes
- Suddenly Cranking the Wheel
- Raising Your Hands to Your Face
- Immediately Exiting the Road
While you might be tempted to pump the brakes, this can cause your vehicle to lose control. Swerving suddenly can result in flipping the car. Any one of these gut reactions can cause a fatal accident.
Instead, begin with lightly pressing the accelerator. Your broken tire will prevent you from speeding up, but this action will help you maintain control of the vehicle. Keep the car moving as straight as possible (adjusting for the pull of the damaged tire), while allowing it to gradually slow down. Once you’ve reduced your speed, slowly pull over onto the side of the road and (again, gently) apply your brakes.
Talk With an Expert About Flat Tire Repair
When you change your tire and put on the spare, make sure you find a replacement as soon as possible. Spare tires are only designed for distances of up to 70 miles (at 50mph max). If you’re dealing with a flat tire, our team at Spartan Auto Care would be happy to assist you with flat tire repair. You can reach our Springfield, MA office at (413) 781-2480, or you can contact our West Springfield, MA location at (413) 739-2175.