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Blown Tire on the 405!

Posted 03-24-2023 at 08:49 AM by BajaFog
Updated 03-24-2023 at 08:52 AM by BajaFog

We RV’rs hear about China Bombs, tires that blow up on you. I think we hope it never happens to us but have that concern in the back of our minds. Our rig was rolling on a set of factory installed Westlake tires. Research will show one that they are no better or worse than any other tire out there, though there are Facebook experts that will tell you differently.

I keep my towing speed at 65 MPH or lower. Sure, I’ll jam it up to 75 to pass when needed (rarely). Trailer tires have speed rating and our Westlakes are rated for 75, so no issues there.

How It Happened
Cruising up Los Angeles’ Mulholland grade on the 405 Freeway and stressing about the interchange to the 101 coming up we hear a very loud “WHAP BAM” and feel the thump as the tire’s tread suddenly detaches, ripping out or decorative fender and marker light wiring in the process. “Wow, its happening to me – I gotta get over” I’m thinking. Lucky for me Jan Baby mostly travels with angels and sure enough a wide breakdown lane was immediately available to my right.

Getting out to access the damage, I chose to get our roadside assistance, State Farm on the phone immediately. “I”m sorry sir, we have no record of that VIN number. Are you sure you added roadside to your policy?” Of course I’m sure! What, you think I’d plan to travel all over the country and not have roadside assistance in place.

Not being a very patient customer I hung up the phone and started plotting plan B. Meanwhile, Jan Baby is calling her angels, she has them on speed dial. A chill goes down my spine as a tow truck magically appears and parks directly in front of us.

A very pleasant gentleman, dressed in a super safety highway vest comes over to Jan’s window and asks us if we would like some help. Once we explain the situation he asks me to get the spare while he jacks up the rig and removes the damaged tire. After replacing the damaged tire he assesses the torn wiring and goes right to work repairing it.

Meet Judi and New Tires

My sister Judi has worked in the auto industry her entire life. She was the responsible one in the family; no windsurfing, no skiing, definitely no hockey. Her guilty pleasure was a million dollar motor home (we RV’rs call those “Class A”), which she paid off! Judi got on the phone and had us booked into a local San Fernando Valley tire shop the next morning. A few hours later we had a set of Carlisle tires on the trailer AND a set of Goodyear Wrangler Trail Runner tires on the truck.

Maybe if I hadn't done so many 90+ degree turns on asphalt, or rolled over one too many curbs? Quien sabe? Upside was being back on the road to meet up with family and friends; and quaff a Baja Fog or two

Posted in JFOTR
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  1. Old Comment
    Great story, I know where your talking about, hate that section! So did you go with a roadside assistance company? If so, which one? We’re looking now. TIA
    Posted 03-31-2023 at 04:08 PM by Surfhag Surfhag is offline
  2. Old Comment
    Westlake tires. Say no more. Carlyle are a bit better, but still not the greatest either. I've had problems with both brands on boat and travel trailers, and finally bought Goodyear Endurance. They are not cheap, but I know that they will last as long as there is tread on them. Anyway, watch the tire pressure, keep the speed reasonable, and that's all you can do!
    Posted 08-06-2023 at 08:06 PM by Dadeoo Dadeoo is offline
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