Summer offers Pennsylvania motorists a relief from snow and ice, so it seems heavy trucks will be less likely to skid and crash while traveling on the Keystone state’s interstates and highways. However, warmer weather also brings the added risk that semi trucks will suffer tire blowouts. According to Popular Mechanics, tire blowouts are much more common starting from about mid-May and lasting to the early part of October.
So why are trucks more likely to blow out tires in warmer weather? For one thing, without the hazards of ice and snow on the roads, truckers and other motorists are motivated to drive longer distances. Also, in the absence of ice there is less reason to drive at a slower pace. Truckers will generally work their vehicles harder in a warmer climate. The greater tire use can wear the tires out faster.
The increase in road travel may present particular trouble to trucks that carry big loads. Heavy cargo weighs down the vehicle and increases pressure on the tires, adding to tire wear and tear. Coupled with more frequent driving in warm weather, the possibility of a tire blowing out on the road increases even further.
Big trucks can still stave off tire blowouts if the tires are properly maintained, particularly if the tires remain inflated to proper levels. A truck that is driving with underinflated tires, however, is at far greater risk of a blowout. Tires without sufficient inflation will take damage as they ride the road. The wire, metal and rubber inside the tire will heat and eventually burst or otherwise fail, resulting in a blowout.
It is also possible for tires can take damage without the damage being detected. Tires driven at below their recommended pressure levels can suffer incremental damage. By the time the truck goes on a summer haul, the tires have deteriorated to the point they may burst even if they have been properly pressurized for the latest haul. Tracking the maintenance history of the tires can reveal the possibility of damage that may cause an accident. But if tire maintenance is neglected, truck tires can become a ticking time bomb for a blowout and a possible vehicle crash.
Be aware that although this article is written to educate readers on the causes of truck accidents, it does not give legal advice.