If you ask any driver his greatest fear; it would most probably be a tyre blowout. This is because it causes complete loss of control over the car and can even lead to a flip-over and be life-threatening. But thanks to the improving technology; not only has the tyre construction improved but even the cars come with tyre pressure monitoring systems to help you better deal with the situation.
Even though the number of tyre blowouts has gone down; it does happen at times. Here, we would walk through how to best deal with it and remain safe and also get a list of tips which will help us prevent tyre blowouts in the first place.
Understanding a tyre blowout
The very first step is to recognize a tyre blowout. With the tyre exploding; you are likely to hear three key sounds which may vary situation-wise. The first sound would be a loud boom of the tyre popping which will reverberate through your car. This would be followed by a whooshing sound which is due to the air escaping from the tyre. After it, you would finally hear the repeated flipping and flopping sound of the deflated tyre. You would feel the car reverberating and slowing down with the force epicenter varying to the position of the tyre which has blown-out. Your car would obviously become difficult to steer.
Handling a tyre blow-out
The National Safety Council and most experts have explicitly lined out critical tips and best practices that would equip you to handle a tyre blowout in the best manner. They are:
The first few moments of a tyre blowout are most scary and pushes any driver to panic. However, you must remain calm and actually do nothing like turning the steering wheel or stepping on the brakes. Remember not to take off your foot from the gas pedal. Any action from your side can cause the vehicle to spin out.
Next step is to keep a firm grip on the steering wheel with both hands for better control and try to keep the car driving in the minimal possible speed in a straight line. This would help avert any possible swerving, flipping or fishtailing. Lower speed would minimize the severity of the damage. The threat is notches higher with an SUV or MUV as they tend to roll over faster.
Given the emergency situation, it is natural that you react by your instinct and slam the brake pedal quite hard. But this can further imbalance the car.
You can keep pressing the gas pedal as it won’t increase the car speed and would also stop you from slamming the brake pedals. This would help you ride over the situation calmly.
Next, you must remain calm and let the car slow down by itself.
With a blown tyre; the car starts dragging significantly high weight. This is enough to slow down the car and bring it to near halt. You must only try to keep the vehicle straight. Turn on the emergency lights so that other drivers also become alert to your situation and drive by safely.
Once the car has slowed down to a speed of 30 mph and preferably 20 mph, steer your car gently off the road to a safe position. You can brake gently here if required. Come out of the car once safely parked and then call for road assistance or a garage for emergency help. It pays to know about the procedures beforehand so that you can proceed smoothly.
Preventing tyre blow-outs
We now know how to deal with a tyre blow-out. Now let’s look at some safety steps that we can take to prevent a tyre blow-out from happening. Read on:
Checking tyre pressure- It is important to check the tyre pressure as often as you can and keep it at the right value. Under-pressure and over-pressure are the biggest causes of a tyre blow-out. You must especially check it before a long road trip and during summers as the high temperature of the road can raise the temperature of the tyre as well to dangerous levels. If you notice any issue; its best to head on to the nearest CEAT tyre care location for an immediate fix.
Change old, worn tyres- No matter how good or superior quality of tyres is present in your car; it is bound to get old and worn. It will have a need a change at some point which will depend on various factors. Driving your car with punctured tyres, worn-out treads, developed cracks, etc. will not only damage the rims and your ride seriously apart from raising the danger of tyre blow-out.
Develop safe driving habits- We may try to drive smartly as a way of show-off but it can cost you dear. It is much better to stick to the basics of good driving habit like keeping your both hands on the steering wheel throughout the drive; driving at the recommended speed on the lower side; applying brakes gently, etc. If you have formed such habits; you would always escape any major accident or blow-out and emerge a winner.
Using high-quality tyres like those offered by CEAT and remaining diligent while driving will help you tackle any situation in the best possible manner and come out safe and sound.