A tragic accident occurred over the weekend in which three (3) Jackson, Mississippi children were killed and 7 others were injured. A preliminary investigation revealed that a Ford Expedition was carrying 10 people, two more people than recommended by the manufacturer. The investigation also showed that the tires on the vehicle were not the correct size. In fact, the tires on the vehicle were not capable of carrying the weight of the vehicle, occupants and luggage. Finally, the left back tire had low tire pressure resulting in a blow out. Once the tire blew out, the driver was apparently unable to control the vehicle leading to the crash. Sadly, none of the occupants were wearing safety restraints and the children were not in child safety seats.
It is critically important to follow the manufacturer's guidelines for tire size, pressure, and occupancy loads. In today's world, we get too busy to check such things or entrust them to others. If we can learn anything from this tragic accident it should be that vehicle maintenance is imperative. The most precious cargo we carry day after day is our family. Please take time to check your tire pressure when going on long trips or even day to day driving. Check to make sure the tires you have on your vehicle are the correct size. Lastly, please fasten your safety belts and make sure your children are properly restrained. Routine maintenance and safety belts can be a lifesaver.
Chuck Mullins is a partner at Coxwell & Associates located in Jackson, Hinds County Mississippi. For over 18 years, he has been helping Mississippians. Learn more about Chuck at the firm's website.