Maine Travel Safety: Tire Wear and Heat Increases Risk for Traffic Accidents

The summer’s is at its peak, as is that heat as the Maine tourism season heads towards autumn. Tire safety will be particularly important through the remainder of the summer travel season, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Tire failure accounts for about 11,000 accidents each and every year. Some of the most common causes for these accidents are blowouts, tread separations, under-inflation and tread separation.Our Portland car accident lawyers understand that under-inflated tires not only increase your risks for an accident, but also hinder your fuel economy. When your tires are not properly inflated, you can lose more than 3 percent of your fuel money. But in addition to the risks affiliated with under-inflated tires, the heat is also causing some concern. As the temperatures rise, our risks for tire malfunctions increase as well.

Properly-maintained tires can help to improve your stopping distance, your traction and your steering and control of your vehicle.

Here are some simple safety tips to make sure you’re on the right road:

-Make sure you know the recommendations for tire pressure in pounds-per-square-inch (PSI). This information can be found inside the door of your vehicle or inside the owner’s manual.

-Consider keeping a tire gauge in your vehicle. You can lose tire pressure in your vehicle each month. You want to make sure you’re checking your tire pressure at least once a month.

-If your vehicle has a monitoring system that shows up on your dashboard, you should give it immediate attention once it’s activated.

-Check the owner’s manual to see the recommended amount of time for tire replacement. Some should be replaced every 6 years, while others require replacement every 10 years. Some tires may need replaced every 18 to 24 months, depending on wear.

-Keep an eye out for treadwear indicators. These are raised sections spaced throughout the bottom of the tread grooves. When you see them, it’s time to replace your tires.

-Give the penny test a whirl. What you do here is put a penny in the tread of your tires with Mr. President’s head upside down. If you’re able to see the top of his head, you should go get some new tires. They’re too worn and they could present some serious problems.

-Be aware of tires on vehicles with occasional use – like recreation vehicles, collector cars, community vehicles, and 15-passenger vans – as they are also susceptible to tire aging.

-Remember that more vehicles experience tire problems when driven under adverse roadway conditions (wet roads, roads underwater, slick roads).

By following these simple tips, you can prevent a potentially fatal and costly accident during your summer travels. Be ready, be prepared and be proactive.

Contact the experienced injury lawyers at Peter Thompson & Associates if you or your child has been injured in a car accident. Call 1-800-804-2004 for a consultation to speak to an attorney about your case.

More Blog Entries:
Traffic Death Toll Rises Nationwide, NHTSA Reports, Maine Injury Lawyer Blog, June 28, 2013

Rising Temps Increasing Risks for Child Heatstroke in Vehicles, Maine Injury Lawyer Blog, June 22, 2013

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