Tires Should be Checked Not Just for Proper Inflation, but Also for Possible Recalls

As we have mentioned before on this website, there are numerous federal agencies that track recall information. For example, the Food and Drug Administration lists recalls of foods, medicines, and cosmetics, and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration lists motor vehicles in which particular safety issues have been identified.

Under federal law, the manufacturer of an automobile that is subject to a recall must notify vehicle owners of the identified safety issue. This is accomplished by a review of both the manufacturer’s own records of vehicle purchasers and current state vehicle registration information. The manufacturer is also obligated to inform its distribution chain of the recall.

At a meeting of the National Transportation Safety Board earlier this week, it was suggested that a similar system should also be in place for directly notifying consumers when there is a tire recall. Presently, there is no national database through which to notify consumers of potentially defective tires purchased through independent tire sellers.

Too Many Tire-Related Accidents and Deaths

According to accident investigators, there are more than 30,000 tire-related accidents each year, and about 500 of these involve fatalities. One reason for this could be that about half of all recalled tires are never taken out of service because their owners are unaware that there is a problem.

Recalls of tires that were part of a vehicle’s original equipment can be carried out in a similar fashion to other defective automobile recalls, but the same is not true for aftermarket tires. Unlike other vehicle parts, such as the ignition or the seats, tires must be purchased multiple times during the typical consumer’s ownership of a vehicle. Independent tire dealers have no obligation to register the tires they sell, and most consumers are ill-equipped to check for recalls on their own.

There is, however, a way to check for possible recalls, if you have the name of the company who manufactured your tire and the identification number from the side of your tire (which starts with “DOT”). Once you have this information, go to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s website and check for recalls, investigations, and complaints.

Product Liability Litigation Concerning Defective Products

Consumers who are injured by dangerous or defective products, including recalled tires, can file suit in a court of law seeking to hold the manufacturer, seller, or wholesaler responsible for damages such as medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Products liability lawsuits can involve multiple theories and claims, including defective design, negligence, manufacturing defects, failures to warn, breaches of warranty, or strict liability.

To Speak with an Attorney About a Product Liability Concern

If you have been involved in an automobile accident and suspect that a defective product such as a bad tire may have contributed to the crash, you should speak to an attorney about the possibility of seeking compensation for your resulting injuries. The Massachusetts products liability attorneys at the Law Offices of John C. Manoog, III, will be glad to review your case at no charge. Call us at (888)262-6664 for an appointment. If necessary, we can come to your home or hospital room to discuss your case.

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