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NHAI Bolero came to the rescue after our car's tyre burst at 100 km/h

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The supervisor told us the reason why such incidents are pretty common in this section of the highway.

BHPian Strider24 recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

So this happened during my ongoing long road trip. While the overall experience so far has been amazing, one tyre blowout experience gave us trouble in the middle of an empty highway.

So finally after driving for nearly 20 years without a single incident, I faced the dreaded tyre blowout at high-speed on a highway.

The brick on the road comes in the video at 0.02 minutes.

Without panicking, my father stopped the car on the shoulder. I inspected the tyre and got right on to changing it. But the scorching heat at 11.35 am on our head and 42-degree temperature made sure that I was the least efficient during this process.

In the next 20 minutes, I was only able to loosen the nuts of the affected wheel and lift the car halfway on the jack. The heat was literally draining the energy out of my body. My wife was urging me to call the RSA and not do it myself and my father was waving his hand for help to the few two-wheelers he saw on the road, but they didn't stop.

Contrary to common sense, I was not ready to wait for an hour or so which is the standard response time for RSA and was continuing my efforts to change the tyre (maybe the effect of extreme heat or the typical driver's ego - how can I take help for a trivial task such as changing a tyre!)

Just when I was about to give up on my EGO, I saw a red/blue Bolero pickup truck in the distance, IT WAS THE NHAI PATROL Vehicle coming. I waved my hand and they stopped and came out of their vehicle toward us.

After narrating the incident to him, the supervisor instructed his two helpers to do the rest of the work. In the next 10 minutes, they wrapped up the tyre change scene as well as checked the underbody for any other damage caused by the brick.

The supervisor also told me how this is a very common nuisance in this section of the highway because of the following reason. When any vehicle breaks down, the driver will put stones, bricks etc on the road surrounding the vehicle. Once the vehicle recovers, the driver simply moves on without removing the stones and this causes such incidents.

He also told us that on the highway, one can dial 1033 for highway assistance, there is one patrol vehicle every 3 km for assistance.

Here are some pics of how this all went down and also the pic of the tyre where it got cut by brick

While I didn't want to write this as the first story from this epic road trip across Madhya Pradesh on its magnificent highways, sharing it asap so that people can be aware of such nuisance and know about the help available to stranded vehicles.

Details of my incident

  • Road - NH39
  • Place- between Chhatarpur and Jhansi, more near to Newari.
  • Speed when a tyre blew- 100km/h on the speedo, 95km/h GPS speed.

Lessons learnt

  • Always note down the highway assistance number (1033, or usually a mobile number displayed alongside the highway) and call them ASAP if in trouble, then call the RSA.
  • I am going to keep a small hydraulic jack as well now. Never know when it could come in handy once again.
  • Be ready for eventualities on long road trips. Keep calm and choose the best alternative to recover.

Hope this helps.

Further questions

I used the spare tyre and I need to replace it. I don't think the cut on this tyre can be repaired.

I had all 5 tyres of Michelin P3ST, these are not available on market anymore. Also, I am in my native town right now where there is no Michelin dealer available. The nearest is Bhopal and there too, the correct replacement is not available.

Options which I am now considering

  • Buy a continental cc5 tyre which is the closest to Michelin in terms of soft compound and low rolling resistance. Use it along with the spare tyre and put them both in the rear (my spare tyre came brand new when I bought this car) and put the best 2 out of 3 Michelin tyres in the front. This was advised by the Continental dealer in Bhopal on call, and also sounds logical to me.
  • I buy a locally available Bridgestone and use it along with a new spare tyre in the front and keep the front right tyre which has around 15k running back in the trunk as spare. In this option, I need recommendations as to which Bridgestone model should I choose that has a softer compound and can be paired with the new Michelin P3ST. Also, is it recommended to pair two different brand tyres on the front? Or shall I keep them in the rear?

Currently, both rear tyres have run around 22k km and are in good condition.

A quick recommendation from the above two options or maybe a better alternative is highly appreciated as I have to travel back to Pune in 10 days and I can't risk travelling 1250 km without a spare tyre.

Thanks a lot.

Here's what BHPian SS-Traveller had to say about the matter:

Tyre blowouts can be better controlled with an additional 1-second warning provided by any TPMS system. Having been through 2 blowouts while using TPMS, and 3 incidents without TPMS (luckily never lost control, but almost panicked the first time it happened - I was 22 y.o. then, and driving an Ambassador on the NH2), I can vouch for the fact that TPMS alerts you a second before the car starts to run on the rim - and that is enough for you to lift off from the A-pedal (but not brake), and grip the steering firmly with both hands to keep the car straight on the road. Also, TPMS warns early on about a tyre that is building up too much pressure or temperature, and preventive action can be taken before catastrophic tyre failure.

In short, TPMS is a must-have safety feature for every car.

Here's what BHPian redohabitat had to say about the matter:

I commend the way your dad and you behaved in a calm manner, that's rule no.1 when facing a tyre burst.

From the options that you are thinking of, I'll suggest option 1, simply because it will be the easiest on the pocket. However, connoisseurs/purists won't agree, since the best idea is to always change 4 tyres together.

Check out BHPian comments for more insights and information.

 
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