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Old 18th September 2009, 20:02   #1
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Default Tyre burst in Xylo!

A cousin of a close friend of mine expired in an accident recently. Details are as below-

This incident happened in UP 3 days back. My friend's cousin & 3 of his friends were traveling in a mahindra xylo, bought in Feb 2009. they were on their way to the airport at the car was doing 80-90 kmph. suddenly the front right tyre bursts, the car skids & knocks off a motorcyclist, crashes against a big divider & topples 3-4 times to the opposite lane. a zen estilo coming from the opposite side again dashed this toppled xylo, the estilo was estimated to be at 90-100 kmph. it is said that all the occupants were safe till the xylo toppled. this guy (my friend's cousin) was seated in the back seat & the impact with the estilo caused many internal injuries to him. by the time the police arrived on the scene, this guy was still conscious but as medical help was not provided on time, the guy died on the way to the hospital, which was very far from the venue of accident. the estilo had 3 occupants & all of them died on the spot. other than this, there were 2 bystanders who came in the way of the toppling xylo, even they died on the spot.

now, what i wanted to know was-

1) what could be the reason for the tyre burst? since the vehicle was brand new, even the tyres were new.

2) as far as i know, xylos come with tubeless tyres & i was wondering, how could a tubeless tyre 'burst' leading to such a disastorous acccident? arent tubless tyres supposed to leak slowly?

3) who is to be blamed? mahindra or the tyre company?

Last edited by aah78 : 18th September 2009 at 22:38. Reason: Misleading title edited - vehicle NOT brand new.
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Old 18th September 2009, 20:10   #2
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Could it be that the tyre pressure was too much in the new car and the air expanded and the tyre just bursted? I dont know why but all the new cars coming out of the showroom have too much air in them.

Sorry to hear about this incident. May the departed soul RIP

Last edited by deky : 18th September 2009 at 20:12.
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Old 18th September 2009, 20:25   #3
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It is indeed very sad to hear of all those deaths, just because of a tyre burst. The tyre is to blame. What tyres are these ? OE ?

You should take the tyre manufacturer & M&M to court (make them party to the case )

This is sad, really sad. THAT is the single reason I change to good tyres the moment I buy a car, even a brand new car, the tyre is your only contact with the road, and also controls how the car beahves in diverse situations.

Hope things get sorted out........
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Old 18th September 2009, 20:41   #4
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Firstly, I extend my sincere condolences to you and to the families of all the victims of the tragic accident!

I am aghast with horror and my mind conjured up still images frame by frame of the accident that you described about.

It will be difficult to say what the exact cause was for the accident. How did you hear that the tyre burst? Was it a witness who said that or did the police mention that after examining the wreck and noticing that the front RHS tyre was deflated/battered whillst the others were intact?

Its really shocking to hear that a tubeless tyre burst because that can't happen unless it was extremely over-inflated.

Looking forward to hearing from you.

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Old 18th September 2009, 21:00   #5
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I am so sorry to hear this. Any news of death on any medium saddens me. The very thought that , today there is this person, you have known all these years and from now...he is gone, you can never see him. Scary.
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Old 18th September 2009, 21:56   #6
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perhaps a sharp object on the ground is to be blamed?

my condolences.
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Old 18th September 2009, 21:56   #7
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I'm extremely sorry for your friend for his loss. It's tragic when such incidents occur.

However, you CANNOT blamne Bridgestone or M&M for this! Do you know if the tyre was running overinflated or underinflated? Without such facts, there is NO way you can blame anyone.

What is possible is this. Like most Indians, the owner of the car would have got air filled at a petrol bunk with a faulty gauge and been on his way. Since the pressure gauge was faulty, the tyre may have been running at a very high or a very low pressure.

Also, maybe there was already a nail in the tyre and since air leaks slowly in a tubeless tyre, the owner didnt notice the gradual decrease in pressure and so, the tyre must have been underinflated which led to overheating and eventual tyre disintegration.

Another theory is this: Maybe there was a sidewall cut sometime back. Feb 2009 - Sep 2009 is 7 months of taking abuse on Indian roads. Maybe there was some sidewall damage and the owner might have just got a heat patch job done which is never 100% pukka. This patch might have given way at high speed and lead to the accident.

Maybe there was a sharp stone or a big nail in the road which ripped a large hole in the tyre which lead to instantaneous decrease in tyre pressure thus, leading to a tragic accident.

These are all theories. My point is simply this.

It is foolish, irresponsible and wrong to try to straightaway blame M&M or Bridgestone for this very sad incident without being in possession of all the facts.
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Old 18th September 2009, 22:05   #8
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Really shocked to hear of this loss. 6 deaths due to no drivers fault. Hope all RIP. I couldnt help conjuring it and it is really freak. There could have been some sharp object on the road or the tyre pressures could be wrong. We cant blame M&M or Tyre Company though. Hope the investigation is proper and we can find the reason.
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Old 18th September 2009, 22:30   #9
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Originally Posted by Nikhilb2008 View Post

It is foolish, irresponsible and wrong to try to straightaway blame M&M or Bridgestone for this very sad incident without being in possession of all the facts.
Couldn't agree more. There are just too many variables and the most important one is tyre pressure which is the owner's responsibility. But I do want to know if a tubeless tyre can burst suddenly? I thought they were supposed to leak air slowly than burst in one go?
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Old 18th September 2009, 22:40   #10
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If there is sufficient pressure involved, they can and will explode. A sidewall cut/failure unnoticed can also lead to catastrophic failure.

RIP the people who lose their lives.
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Old 18th September 2009, 23:14   #11
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A very sad accident. Only words I can use that God has better plans for all 6 of them.

Now about the tyre burst, first thing we must remember is that its one object that is moving in touch with Indian roads. You cannot blame either Mahindra or the tyre company for this. The possibility is that there must be some sharp object or there was some damage in side wall that led to sudden loss of air pressure. There is a certain amount of unpredictability as far as India road conditions are concerned, so we dont if the tyre had any side wall damage or not.

Anything it be, but we must atleast do a physical check on tyres every month or so.

OT :
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I think this again bring the bad handling characteritcs of Xylo to the front. Years ago during the firestone tyre problems era in US, one magazine did a sudden tyre pressure loss test on Explorer and during the test they found out that the car is well behaved even with sudden loss. The driver was not aware of the loss and it was deflated with some small device installed on wheel and that device was operated by remote control. This test was done on some long abandoned runway. All I remember is that this car was blue explorer.
Here the Xylo's handling is something to be blamed too, upto some extent. The passengers and engine, both are mounted quite high leading to higher CG.
IIRC, even OD has sudden tyre pressure loss when they were testing Opel Astra diesel, and that too was at high speed.
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Old 18th September 2009, 23:17   #12
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I agree with Nikhil. The real problem are the roadside pumps. I was in binsar this weekend, and at the same tyre pressure reading (as per the pump guys) they will filling massively different quantities. I suspect that as the cause for overinflation. And all of them with digital auto cutoff air filling systems no less.
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Old 18th September 2009, 23:20   #13
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Very sad incident.
I once had a tyre burst in my used Forester (which I sold eventually). In fact the rear tyre sidewall was torn in to pieces. Luckily this happend on a straight road and did not happen in the ghat section which was few kilometers ahead.
Until then I used to believe that tubeless tyres dont go flat all of a sudden and would rather leak out gradually.
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Old 18th September 2009, 23:31   #14
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RIP all those who lost their lives in the accident.

There is one query that I always had and somehow related to this - When we drive over rough or pot-holed roads, the Wheel RIM gets bent and then air starts filling in to the tyre and eventually bursts. Heard about this lot of times on the Pune- Mumbai expressway.

However, these were only possible in Tube tyres. Is this possible in tubless as well or am I missing something?
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Old 18th September 2009, 23:37   #15
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as all of you say, that a tubeless tyre can burst due to over or under inflation, i think that might be the cause. but then that defeats the whole purpose of having tubeless tyres, isnt it? i agree the owner should be responsible for maintaining correct pressures in the tyre but isnt tubeless tyres supposed to avoid tyre bursts?

is there any chance that the tyre maybe having a manufacturing defect too?

@ gpa: yes, the policemen examined the wreck & cited tyre burst as the reason for the crash.
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