Abrasions On Steer Sidewall--how Bad Is It?

Topic 20811 | Page 2

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Pianoman's Comment
member avatar

I would get that tire off there for sure. Weakening the sidewall like that makes it totally unpredictable. You might get another 50,000 miles out of it or it might blow at any moment. You can't tell from the outside how much structural damage was done to the tire.

Call the shop and describe the damage. Make sure they let you put a new one on. If by chance they tell you to keep driving on it, email them a picture of it and tell them you'd like them to have a look for themselves and then respond to the email with their recommendation.

Personally I wouldn't drive on it past the next truck stop. Not a steer tire. If the company insists you keep driving on it, make sure they put that in writing. Companies will say almost anything over the phone, but once they have to commit to something in writing they know it's a different ballgame.

If it was a drive tire or trailer tire, not a big deal. Steer tire? Very big deal.

They told me over the phone to go ahead and drive it back to CO and they'll replace it there. I can give them a call back and get them to email me that. That's a 1500 mile trip so there are alot of things that could go wrong.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Personally I wouldn't do it. I wouldn't drive on a compromised steer tire for 1,500 miles knowing that if that thing blows it could be catastrophic. Companies will do anything to save a buck when it's not their life on the line. Like I said, it might last 50,000 miles or it might blow without warning as soon as you get up to highway speed.

Not to mention, I would think DOT would shut you down on the spot. I don't think you can have chunks taken out of the sidewall of a tire and drive it legally. Marks are one thing, but you have gouges taken out of the rubber. I'm not sure that would pass inspection.

That's one of those risk/reward decisions that just doesn't make sense. The risk is entirely too high. A steer tire blowout can be catastrophic. A drive tire or trailer tire is no big deal. You can lose one of those and not even realize it. Heck, you could drive with several of them flat and not realize it. But that steer tire is critical.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Pianoman's Comment
member avatar

Ok guys and gals, the rumors are true. Brett really is the trucking god.

I called the shop and explained that now that I can see it better during the day, I'm not sure I want to drive it 1500 miles back to Denver--looks a little worse than I thought. The shop manager assured me it was 100% legal and there was nothing to worry about since there are no cords showing. I asked him to send me that in writing--no problem.

He texted me this: "We're gonna have you stop somewhere to change it out."

Hahaha

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Sno-boy's Comment
member avatar

"In writing" changes things dramatically in disputes or directives. Good advice from Brett.

Ok guys and gals, the rumors are true. Brett really is the trucking god.

I called the shop and explained that now that I can see it better during the day, I'm not sure I want to drive it 1500 miles back to Denver--looks a little worse than I thought. The shop manager assured me it was 100% legal and there was nothing to worry about since there are no cords showing. I asked him to send me that in writing--no problem.

He texted me this: "We're gonna have you stop somewhere to change it out."

Hahaha

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Ok guys and gals, the rumors are true. Brett really is the trucking god.

I called the shop and explained that now that I can see it better during the day, I'm not sure I want to drive it 1500 miles back to Denver--looks a little worse than I thought. The shop manager assured me it was 100% legal and there was nothing to worry about since there are no cords showing. I asked him to send me that in writing--no problem.

He texted me this: "We're gonna have you stop somewhere to change it out."

Hahaha

AWESOME!

As if by MAGIC, now that he can be held accountable, changed his tune. Great story! I have used this technique several times when asked to do something that puts my butt and/or wallet on the line. Incredibly important lesson here.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Cornelius A.'s Comment
member avatar

I am not a trucker but I have seen a lot of OOS for less than that ..... thank God you followed Brett's advice

Personally I wouldn't do it. I wouldn't drive on a compromised steer tire for 1,500 miles knowing that if that thing blows it could be catastrophic. Companies will do anything to save a buck when it's not their life on the line. Like I said, it might last 50,000 miles or it might blow without warning as soon as you get up to highway speed.

Not to mention, I would think DOT would shut you down on the spot. I don't think you can have chunks taken out of the sidewall of a tire and drive it legally. Marks are one thing, but you have gouges taken out of the rubber. I'm not sure that would pass inspection.

That's one of those risk/reward decisions that just doesn't make sense. The risk is entirely too high. A steer tire blowout can be catastrophic. A drive tire or trailer tire is no big deal. You can lose one of those and not even realize it. Heck, you could drive with several of them flat and not realize it. But that steer tire is critical.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Ok guys and gals, the rumors are true. Brett really is the trucking god.

I called the shop and explained that now that I can see it better during the day, I'm not sure I want to drive it 1500 miles back to Denver--looks a little worse than I thought. The shop manager assured me it was 100% legal and there was nothing to worry about since there are no cords showing. I asked him to send me that in writing--no problem.

He texted me this: "We're gonna have you stop somewhere to change it out."

Hahaha

rofl-3.gif

How funny is that, right? I've been in this industry so long that often times I know what people are going to say or do before they do.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Anchorman's Comment
member avatar

In a situation like this, the key words to use with your company are " safe and legal. If it's 100% not safe and/or legal, and you state that to them, the only thing they can do for you is immediately fix the issue. Most phone calls are recorded. If you send them a message it is also recorded. If they forced you to run after you stating it was "not safe or legal" there would be some serious repercussions.

Pianoman's Comment
member avatar

The story continues...

I got to the Love's to get the tired changed, and after waiting two hours for my turn, the mechanic tells me it's nothing more than a scratch and he can't justify changing it out. So I leave and call the shop to tell them I'm coming back to CO as is, and I apologized for making a mountain out of a molehill.

Now the shop manager gets p*ssed at the Love's mechanic and tells me it's not his call to make. He sent me back to the Love's and I'm here getting the tire changed now.

I just want this stupid day to be over. I'm tired and embarrassed. Lol.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

rofl-3.gif

Wow. What a crazy day. Well I can assure you there is absolutely nothing to be embarrassed about. Playing it safe with a damaged steer tire before a 1500 mile drive is simply being smart, safe, and thinking long-term. You don't take the risk of a catastrophic failure and possibly killing yourself or some innocent family to save $100 On a tire. It's simply a chance you do not take.

I've done my fair share of reading about tires and the causes of blowouts and catastrophic failures and I can assure you that you were not making a mountain out of a mole hill. There is no way to tell how much structural damage was done to that sidewall from looking at it. Obviously there was a tremendous amount of pressure put on that tire by something fairly sharp if it gouged it like that. If you have a tiny weak spot in that side wall and you hit a pothole at 65 miles an hour you can easily blow out that tire.

The only thing that matters is getting the job done safely. I would not have bet my life that the tire was going to stay together.

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