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10/29/06   |   By

Staying Safe on All Four Wheels | DC Metro Area Personal Injury Law Blog

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October is AAA Car Care Month.  Results of a new  poll by the Rubber Manufacturers Association (RMA)   show that 86% of motorists don’t know how to check tire pressure, this represents a serious weakness in car maintenance that could cause accidents and injuries.

Another recent poll by RMA shows that 34% of respondents do not know how to tell if their tires are bald.  Even more concerning, according to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) , each year tire blow-outs or flat tires cause an average of 23,000 vehicle crashes, and claim 535 lives.

RMA suggests drivers use the word, PART, to remember the four key issues that should be on everyone’s checklist to make sure  your tires are safe:

  • Pressure

This should be constantly checked, making sure to adhere to the correct air pressure located typically on the vehicle door edge, door post, glove box door or fuel door. Keep in mind air pressure in a tire goes up (in warm weather) or down (in cold weather) 1-2 pounds for every 10 degrees of temperature change.

  • Alignment

Your alignment and balance should be checked periodically and corrected by a professional.

  • Rotation

Rotating tires can help with uneven wear. Refer to your owner’s manual for specific recommendations. If none exist, rotating every 60,000 miles is a good rule of thumb.

  • Tread

Do the penny test to check tread by placing a penny into a tread groove. If part of Lincoln’s head is covered by the tread, you’re driving with the proper amount of tread. If you can see all of his head, you should buy a new tire.

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