Total Catastrophic Tire Failure at Speed - Firestone R4S, 245-75-16E: Not subject to Recall????
I'm 43. I figured out that I have owned 53 cars in my life so far, and currently own 7, which is about average for me. I figured I have had 3 sets of tires per car. Some more, some less, but 3 sets are about right. That's 53 cars, 4 tires per car, 3 sets, that 636 tires.
I've had all makes, sizes and configurations. I even owned a set of Firestone 500's. In all those cars, with all those tire in all those years, I have NEVER had a total catastrophic failure until now. I've had flats, blowouts, belt shift, wear though, bald spots... but nothing like this. I purchased a 1999 Chevy Suburban K2500 when I became a father recently.
I figured my new little guy would be safe in this tank. Monday, September 4, 2000, while traveling 70 MPH on I 95 my Right Rear Firestone disintegrated. The tread completely left the tire. This vehicle as equipped weighs close to 10,000 pounds. The consequences of this event at 70 MPH in labor day traffic should have been devastating. Loss of control at least, rollover... probably. Fortunately, I'm a paranoid. Not as a hobby, I 'm paranoid for a living. This Suburban was equipped to U.S. Secret service specifications, Including Hutchinson 2 part solid ballistic run flat tire inserts bolted right on to the hubs. Riding along, and BANG! The entire tread section departed, leaving virtually nothing but the sidewalls. We had a lot of noise, the tire did some body damage, we had a good scare, but I was able to decelerate safely, and travel a couple miles to a safe place to change It. Now, It strikes me as just a little too much of a coincidence that after 636 tires, I get complete tread separation just when Firestone is recalling 6 million tires for the same problem???? Why are they only recalling 15 inch tires??
Willaim R. C. PA
Date of Accident: Sept 5, 2000
Submitted Sept. 7, 2000
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