Someone really wanted to get home. Or maybe this is where they finally realized that they were practically riding on their rim and stopped. Here’s a close-up:
I once followed a lincoln about 5-6 miles while they were driving on a bare rim. Of course, being in the sunshine state and thus probably in their 80’s or 90’s, I doubt they had any clue about it. There are nice grooves all up and down I-75 from big rigs doing this.
That’s one of the problems with these low-profile tires. If you start losing pressure while driving you don’t know it until it starts making noise. By the time it starts making noise…. well, it looks like that. Happened twice to me with my Audi A3.
The higher sidewall tires you can tell you’ve got an issue early on because the car is clearly off kilter or handles oddly.
Could be worse. I was once riding my motocycle up I-5 south of Tacoma, when I saw a wheel and tire (sans car) go merrily bouncing past me (*and* going in the same direction). I quickly checked my rear view mirror and saw a three-wheeled Pinto screeching down the lane, sparks flying.
While living in the Bay Area I decided to go for a nice night ride on the San Tomas Expressway. I grabbed a handful of throttle coming off the on-ramp and about 1/8th of a mile later screeched to a stop. On the left shoulder was a rear axle and tire. Looked around and noticed a ’67-’68 Mustang about 100 yards from the axle, sitting on its rear subframe. Rode up to the Mustang and saw the other axle/tire another 20 feet or so in front of the Mustang.
Someone had a very bad day, very suddenly I suspect.
♪ You picked a fine time to leave me Loose Wheel ♫
Hmm, why stop now? Tire & rim are trash so just keep going until you get home.
I wonder about that when I see people changing tires in very narrow spots on the highway, I think if that happens to me I’d just drive slowly to a safer spot and eat the $50 for a new rim..
I have done that. Next day I drove on the flat to the tire store, at – 20 degrees and snow on the roads.
That’s crazy! Unless he’s driving on run-flat tires, tires that are made to run while flat, I don’t see how anyone can safely drive down the highway.
Sorry to say, but run-flat tires are a solution looking for a problem. So you pay extra for a tire that is able to run while flat and that “advantage” will only materialize when the tire is shot?
Some tires & rims are more $$ than others. That being said, never stop in a bad neighborhood or in a dangerous spot on the highway. Your life is worth more than a wheel.
+1 on that! No wheel is worth a human life. I for one wouldn’t want to roll the dice against some idiot hurtling down the freeway in a kid packed minivan trying to wrangle a brood of screaming devilspawn, texting, and drinking a latte.
From watching lots and lots of “Worlds Wildest Police Videos”, I am always surprised by how far a car can go sans 1, 2, 3 or even 4 or more tires.
I remember one cop in one of those ‘wildest’ videos commenting that a much abused tirefree wheel looked like it was from the Flintstone’s car.
Someone needs to find Fred and Wilma’s car and give it a good write-up, it would be the oldest CC we’d ever see posted here 🙂
You’d think the ‘whap-whap-whap’ on that Honda’s fender would have gotten their attention sooner.
Recently I was driving to Crappy Tire (on a highway with 50MPH speed limit) and I passed an LH-bodied Mopar driving slower than traffic in the right-hand lane. It had a flat tire that was starting to come apart like that. It was riding on a factory chromed aluminum wheel, which would be expensive to replace. Judging from the dents around one of the wheel arches, another tire had also come apart at some point and the driver just kept going then too.
I got to Crappy Tire and was just walking into the front door when the car pulled into the parking lot. I figured that the clueless owner had come to get their service guys to deal with his tire, but NO he got the jack and spare tire out of the trunk and changed them himself in the parking lot.
Why did he drive all the way there to change his own tire? He passed several other businesses with suitable parking lots where he could’ve stopped to change it.
He must have been hoping that the aura of C-T would rub off on him so he could do the job right the first time?
The tire pressure warning systems on newer cars should make a flat from a slow leak less of an issue down the road. Speaking of low profile tires a tenant of mine told me an insane story about hitting a shallow pothole in her new 3-series and how the cost to replace the tire and wheel was something close to $2,000! Luckily she had bought the “tire insurance” which I didn’t even know they had.
I hit a deep pothole with my ’13 Beetle back around February and a particularly nasty front had rolled through, and while it didn’t flat the tire, it did not only bend the rim, but also knocked the whole wheel off axis. No way to straighten that! Found an eBay take-off wheel for a couple hundred, and after close inspection, decided to keep the tire instead of replacing. No problems, thankfully.
It can happen suddenly–I can attest. A few years ago, I noticed one of my front tires on the Marauder showing a little bit of cord near the shoulder, so I ordered new fronts and was told they’d be two days in arriving as the brand and size I needed (245/50 ZR-18) had to be ordered. While driving on I-40 the next day I noticed the signature thump of a tire going flat and knew I had pushed my luck too far. I got over to the right lane and tried to make it to the exit about 500 yards ahead. I’d probably made it 100 or so when the tread of the tire completely separated from the sidewall, exited the fenderwell and was rolling next to me. I pulled off immediately and the tread went rolling past me and down an embankment. All that was left was rim and sidewall…
Thankfully the rim wasn’t damaged as replacements for those wheels aren’t cheap (I want to say something like $500 per). I called roadside assistance to change the tire since I figured they’d have a real hydraulic jack and possibly an impact wrench and I didn’t want to be fiddling with a scissor jack and a tire iron by the side of a busy highway!
That day I learned my lesson to NEVER drive on a tire that’s showing cord.
I bought a used Class C motorhome that had less than 12k miles but was 20 years old. The tires were obviously weather-checked but I tried to risk driving it home. I made it less than a mile when I heard the ka-wham of a tire letting go in the front. I coasted to the shoulder and was surprised it wasn’t trying to lurch into a ditch. When I got out and checked the tire, it was still inflated… but the entire tread had decided to pursue a solo career. After cobbling on the pitiful-looking spare, I slowly made my way to the nearest tire shop and shelled out the cash for six new tires.
H@ll with that.. we used to wire-tie the tires to our 1928 model A Ford, stuff them with Spanish moss, and drive all over town! We’d have a kid on each fender, we were all teenagers then, and when the tire flew off one would jump off while moving and chase down the wheel… it was bad when that happened near a river.. we usually got home on the rims… good times, poor car… HA! You don’t know how much we stimulated the bailing-wire industry either… should have used Duck tape if it had existed!!!
Likely has no spare and the rim is fine the tyre has only just begun to flap.
My flat tire story has sworn me off temporary spares forever. I was driving to LA from San Diego in a monsoon like rain around 1995. Somehow the right front tire blew out the sidewall with a quarter size hole in it. The Jetta instantly hooked right and felt like it was on 2 wheels and crossed all four lanes without somehow being hit and slammed into the muddy sidewall hard. We were tossed into the seatbelts, and I was amazed other then a bent wheel, broken motor mount, missing hubcap and grill emblem, the car was undamaged. I put on the space saver spare, but under the flooded roadway were rocks that washed onto the San Diego freeway. I hit one and the temp spare rim bent and went flat. Maybe there was not enough air in it, I don’t know. At 1:30 am in East LA with my 15 year old niece, it was not a good place to be. After going through a gas station that had about 15 mini spares to try, not one had the right wheel lug pattern. I wound up putting the back tire on the front and the flat full size on the rear, I drove about 40 minutes at 45 mph, and the flooded road kept the tire cool enough to get us home. When I pulled off the flat I drove on, the inside sidewall was threads, the rubber was gone. An early Rabbit rim 4.5 X 13 and a 155-80 R13 tire fit in the spare well, and I feel much better having a full size rear tire now, I do think I would run it on the back and switch tires if a front went flat if I was in the boonies. At least I could do the speed limit legally.
Temp spares are sometimes under diameter too. Im pretty sure that running two different outside diameter tires on a driven axle would stress the diferential gears if done over a long distance. Similar to ‘driveline wrapup’ that occurs on old school part time 4×4 systems if you engage 4wd on hard pavement and drive more than a few miles.
Phone call or texting session must have ended.
If only it was a DS or a CX, the tire would still be in reparable shape. After all didn’t the guy with big nose ran away from an assassination on 3 tires?
We were a bunch of guys and gals in a GM full size van rolling towards Indianapolis. It was my turn on the wheel and it was the very first time for me to drive a full size van. After about 200 yards I asked the guy who drove before me: “Is it normal that the steering is this vague?” “Yeah, that’s normal”, he said.
It wasn’t. It got worse, I pulled over and the right front was flat.
A few years back down by the Florida/Georgia border on the side of a backroad there was a disabled Subaru that must have had half its front fender shredded by a tire blow out. Earlier this week while biking home from work I got passed by a Neon driving on a flat front tire stinking up the place and making a lot of noise.
About 12 or so years ago mom and I noticed the Saab sounded a bit different and felt a bit different. When she got to school to drop me off (about a mile down the road) the tire was quite deflated.
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