Unless you hear the tire burst, the first sign of a blowout will be that your car suddenly pulls hard to one side. Your instinct will be to slam on the brakes, but don’t. Sudden braking is the single worst thing that you can do if a tire blows out. Breaking will only exacerbate the problem, and it could cause a total loss of control. Repeat this thought to yourself over and over so that you are programmed to act if the worst happens.

Instead, slowly lift your foot from the gas while steering with both hands to stay in your lane. Keep looking ahead and turn your steering wheel to keep in a straight line. Maintain momentum by accelerating and then ease of the gas to slow down – accelerating is not done to speed the car up, simply to maintain momentum and minimize the risk of and effect of a side slide. Then try and maneuver one lane at a time towards the shoulder. You’re better off continuing to drive, at below 30 miles an hour, with the blown tire flapping away than stopping before you’re clear of the traffic. (Don’t worry about damaging the tire-it’s ruined.)

Burst tyres can never be salvaged. You can drive on the tire very slowly to a safe place but do not attempt to go any further than absolutely necessary. Repairable punctures can turn into irreparable tires if you drive on them.

Here are some tire checks you should constantly follow:

– Check your tire pressures weekly
– Check tires for damage weekly with a quick visual check every day before you enter the car.
– Check your tires before you embark on long journeys.
– Check your vehicle handbook for correct tire pressures for different vehicle loads.
– Check your tire pressure more often during heat waves.

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