Tread separation is one of the most common reasons modern radial tires fail. Every steel-belted radial tire has two belts that circle the tire to make it stronger. While this prevents blowouts—which used to be a common danger—these belts can tear apart in certain conditions. This leads to the tread coming off the tire and often causes the driver to crash. The tire tread flies down the road and may cause other accidents and damage to other vehicles in its path.
If a situation like this led to your crash, a car accident caused by separated tire tread lawyer in Pittsburgh, PA, can help you understand if you qualify for compensatory damages. At Berger and Green, our car accident lawyers can work with you no matter if the tire came off your car or it came from another vehicle. These cases are sometimes complex, but our attorneys can ensure you hold the right party responsible. Call our office today at 412-661-1400 for a free case review.
Understand Your Insurance Options After a Pennsylvania Car Accident
- File a claim based on your no-fault insurance policy to pay for your medical care, up to the limits of the policy;
- File a claim against the liable party to collect economic damages; and
- Potentially file a claim against the liable party to collect economic and non-economic damages.
No matter whether you opted for full tort or limited tort insurance, you must carry a no-fault insurance policy that will cover your medical care up to the limits of the policy. Filing this type of claim can usually help you recover enough to pay for most minor injuries.
If you can identify another party whose negligence caused your accident, you can also file a claim for economic damages. This is true no matter if you carry full tort or limited tort coverage. These damages include:
- Any remaining medical bills;
- Ongoing care costs;
- Lost wages;
- Repair or replacement of your vehicle; and
- Out-of-pocket costs.
For those who opt to have full tort coverage, non-economic damages are also available. Non-economic damages include emotional distress and pain and suffering. These damages can increase your payout exponentially depending on the nature and severity of your injuries.
You may also qualify to recover non-economic damages if you carry limited tort coverage, but you meet an exception to the law. Most commonly, this occurs because you suffered serious and catastrophic injuries that meet the state’s serious injury threshold. There are also other exceptions, and we can review your case to determine if you qualify for these damages.
Who Is Liable for the Accident and the Resulting Injuries?
Before we can determine who acted negligently and who is liable for your damages following this type of accident, we need to understand what caused the tread separation to occur. In general, there are a few reasons a tread separation happens:
- The motorist performed inadequate vehicle maintenance and failed to replace their tires when necessary due to age and wear;
- A retailer kept the tires longer than their recommended shelf life before selling them; or
- The tire had a manufacturing defect that caused the belts to rip apart and the tread to separate.
In each of these circumstances, the liable party would likely be different. We can help you determine what happened and explain your options for compensation.
What Can I Expect From the Claims Process After a Separated Tire Tread Accident?
We will need to fully investigate the circumstances surrounding your car accident to ensure we identify the right liable party or parties, build a strong case for compensation, and calculate the full value of your damages. If we believe a tire defect led to your tread separation crash, this requires additional work prove the case against the manufacturer.
Our investigation into your wreck will likely include:
- Requesting the police report, your medical records, and other documents pertaining to the accident;
- Identifying and analyzing all available physical evidence in your case;
- Working with accident reconstruction specialists to understand what happened and why;
- Sending a survey team to the accident site to document the scene and collect the tire carcass, if possible;
- Calling in engineers or other industry experts who can examine the remains of the tire and identify any visible defects;
- Searching for any similar cases where defects occurred in the same type of tire; and
- Collecting receipts, bills, estimates, and other documentation of your damages.
Once we complete our investigation and have a strong case against the tire manufacturer or another liable party, we will file an insurance claim on your behalf. This usually involves sending a demand letter outlining our case and requesting a payout to cover your damages.
The insurance company typically responds with a counter-offer that is much too low to cover your expenses, but this begins negotiations. In most cases, our aggressive negotiators can convince the insurance company to pay out a fair settlement.
If the insurer refuses a fair offer, Pennsylvania’s statute of limitations gives us two years from the date of the accident to file a defective vehicle part lawsuit against the manufacturer or a negligence suit against another liable party. While this is rarely our initial approach to this type of case, we are not afraid to litigate any case we handle.
Talk to a Separated Tire Tread Car Accident Lawyer in Pittsburgh.
If you believe a separated tire tread caused your Pittsburgh accident, Berger and Green can help you understand what happened and explain your options for compensation. We can help you hold the tire company responsible for a defective product, or file an insurance claim based on another motorist’s liability policy.
We offer complimentary consultations and may be able to handle your tire tread separation accident case on a contingency basis. Call us today at 412-661-1400 for your free case review.