You’re driving down the road when all of a sudden you hear a pop coming from your car. No need to panic, tire blowouts happen all of the time! While unfortunate, most people have either experienced a tire blowout or will in their time driving a car. Tire blowouts can quickly turn into dangerous situations if they aren’t handled properly. So here are six steps to take when there’s a tire blowout.
1. Don’t Panic
If your tire blows out you should use those first couple of seconds to stay calm. You can cause more damage by stopping abruptly or veering your car out of your lane. Instead, you should take a second to process the situation and make sure that you are okay.
Hearing a tire blowout and feeling your car jerk is not something that happens every day. But the best way to stay safe in this situation is to make sure you stay calm. Make sure you don’t speed up or hit the brakes hard as this can cause your car to spin out. Instead, stay the course and then take action.
2. Steer Straight Ahead
Once you have a grasp on the situation, continue to steer your car straight. If you’re near a shoulder in the road, it may be tempting to pull over and try to get off the road. However, if you make any sharp turns or actions, you could lose control of your vehicle. Instead, keep steering your car straight ahead.
You should also continue steering straight ahead if you are riding a motorcycle that has a tire blowout. If you, unfortunately, find yourself in a motorcycle accident because of a blowout or outside factor, JT Legal Group can help you every step of the way.
3. Don’t Hit the Brakes
Your first instinct when something goes wrong with your vehicle will be to step on the brakes. But if you’re down a tire, stepping on the brakes can cause more harm than good. Instead of stepping on the brakes, gently step on the gas pedal to regain control of your vehicle. Then you should let your car continue going straight until it slows down on its own.
Once your car is at 30mph or below, you can start to gently press down on the brakes. Take your time with this to avoid spinning out. Coming to a slow stop will also give people around you enough time to slow down behind you or go around you if there’s heavy traffic. Don’t worry about slowing anything down, worry about your safety first.
4. Turn on Your Hazard Lights
Once you feel that you have fully gained control of your vehicle, you need to turn on your hazard lights. This will alert other drivers that there is something wrong with your vehicle. They will start to slow down to go around you and make the entire area safer while you slow down to a stop.
5. Pull Over
When you have everything under control, you can finally make your way to the side of the road. Make sure you do this safely and don’t cut off traffic to do so. The last thing you want to do is cause an accident when you’re almost off of the road and out of harm’s way. Remember to keep your hazard lights on and to drive slowly to guide your car out of the lanes.
6. Stay Safe on the Side of the Road
Just because your car is on the side of the road doesn’t mean you are completely in the clear. You will want to make sure that if you get out of the car, you do so on the side of your vehicle that is away from the road.
You don’t want to open your door into oncoming traffic. Your door could hit other cars or motorists. You also put yourself at risk of being close to a busy road.
Once you are safely on the side of the road, you can assess the damage. If you know how to change a tire, you can start doing that while on the side of the road. Just make sure you keep the hazard lights on and stay in a place where motorists can see you. If you have emergency reflectors in your car, now would be the time to put them out.
If you don’t know how to change a tire or the damage is too extensive, you can wait for a tow truck while making sure you’re far away from the road.
Tire blowouts are unexpected and scary while driving. They account for many road accidents because of their abrupt nature. Most people will not be prepared for a tire blowout, but it’s crucial to know what to do to keep yourself and others around you safe. Now that you know what to do, you can feel better getting behind the wheel and being a safe driver.