India experiences one of the highest accident rates globally, with many of these accidents stemming from insufficient vehicle maintenance. An incident on the Lucknow – Agra Expressway serves as a stark reminder of how neglecting proper tyre maintenance can result in a serious accident.
Tyre Burst Incident: What Happened?
The incident was captured by the dashboard camera of a Honda Jazz hatchback. The footage shows the Jazz traveling at a moderate speed in the middle lane of the expressway. Suddenly, a Honda City attempting to overtake the Jazz loses control and collides with the hatchback. Subsequently, the City spins out of control, blocking the Jazz’s path. The Jazz collides with the City once more before coming to a stop.
Both vehicles suffered significant damage. However, remarkably, despite this high-speed collision, the occupants of both vehicles emerged unharmed. The City lost control due to a tyre blowout. While the exact tyre condition and factors like tyre pressure are not confirmed, the use of old tyres or failure to maintain proper pressure can lead to such incidents.
Tyre blowouts are extremely perilous, and there have been numerous instances of sudden tyre blowouts causing vehicles to lose control and crash. These events unfold rapidly, leaving drivers with little time to react. On fast highways, such incidents can result in drivers losing control and colliding with medians, going off the road, crashing into other vehicles or objects, or even rolling over at high speeds, potentially leading to fatal injuries or fatalities.
How to avoid Tyre Bursts?
To avoid tyre blowouts and ensure your safety on the road, it’s essential to follow proper tyre maintenance practices and be aware of potential risk factors. Here are some tips to help you prevent tyre blowouts:
- Regularly Check Tyre Pressure: Maintain the recommended tyre pressure as specified in your vehicle’s owner’s manual or on the tyre placard located on the driver’s side door jamb or in the glove compartment.
- Inspect Tyres for Damage: Regularly examine your tyres for signs of damage, such as cuts, punctures, bulges, or cracks.
- Rotate and Balance Tyres: Regularly balance your tyres to prevent uneven wear, which can lead to tyre failure.
- Maintain Proper Alignment: Ensure your vehicle’s wheels are properly aligned to prevent uneven tyre wear and maintain stability.
- Avoid Overloading: Do not exceed your vehicle’s maximum load capacity, as overloading can place excessive stress on tyres and increase the risk of blowouts.
- Drive Smoothly: Avoid harsh acceleration, abrupt braking, and sharp turns, as aggressive driving can cause excessive wear and tear on tyres.
- Reduce Speed on Rough Roads: When driving on potholed or rough roads, reduce your speed to minimize the impact on your tyres.
- Be Cautious with Curbs and Obstacles: Avoid hitting curbs or driving over obstacles whenever possible, as this can damage your tyres.
- Replace Old Tyres: Tyres have a limited lifespan, typically around 6 years, even if they have plenty of tread left. Replace old tyres, especially if they are showing signs of aging, such as dry rot or cracking.
- Avoid Overinflation: Do not overinflate your tyres, as this can lead to uneven wear and reduce traction. Follow the recommended tyre pressure guidelines.