A truck/bus crash that killed eight people and wounded 25 others emphasizes the dangers of faulty tries on big rigs. Faulty tires cause thousands of motor vehicle accidents and injuries each year, but tire blowouts on large trucks and buses are especially dangerous due to the size and weight of these commercial vehicles.
Faulty Tires Create Dangerous Driving
When a truck or bus tire blows out, the vehicle quickly veers in the direction of the blown-out tire. Sudden and violent veering of a fully-loaded semi-truck or passenger bus weighing thousands of pounds can cause the vehicles to jackknife or rollover into nearby or oncoming traffic. With a blowout, large pieces of the exploded tire can also go flying through the air hitting anything in their path. For nearby drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists, the consequences are often deadly.
Although tire blowouts happen suddenly without warning, many are caused by things that can be avoided such as:
- Over-inflated or under-inflated tires
- Over-loaded vehicles
- Worn tire treads
- Potholes and hazardous road conditions
- Manufacturing defects
A recent truck accident in Albuquerque, New Mexico killed eight people and injured dozens of others, including three small children and two infants among the 49 passengers. A large semi-trailer truck plowed head-on into a Greyhound bus heading from Albuquerque to Phoenix. The semi-trailer was headed east on a busy freeway when it had a blowout, sending the fully-loaded truck across the median into oncoming traffic. It crashed head-on into the bus. The scene of the accident showed an upside down semi-trailer that was shredded in pieces. The front of the Greyhound bus was shirred off and injured passengers were laying all over the ground. The New Mexico State Police described a chaotic scene with people screaming. The National Transportation Safety Board is currently investigating the crash. Records show that the driver told officials that one of his front tires blew out, forcing the uncontrollable semi-trailer into oncoming traffic where it crashed into the Greyhound bus.
Trucking companies, truck drivers, and tire manufacturers can be held liable if an accident occurs due to operator negligence, improper maintenance, or manufacturing defects. Commercial trucking and bus companies are expected to make sure that tires are properly inflated and in good condition to prevent vehicle crashes that often result in serious injuries and deaths.