What Causes Wheel Separation Accidents?

Wheel separation accidents are more common than people might expect. As the name implies, separation accidents happen when the wheel detaches from the vehicle. This can happen for numerous reasons, which Alabama tire defect lawyer Rick Morrison discusses in this article. No matter why a wheel separation car accident occurs, the potential for devastating injury is high, creating a serious danger for drivers and their passengers.

Common Causes of Wheel Separation Accidents in Alabama

Wheel separation accidents can happen for different reasons. Often, the negligence of others plays a role in causing accidents of this type. If you were injured in a crash that was caused by tire defects or other vehicle defects, you should consult with a Montgomery car accident lawyer about your legal options. Some of the most common causes of wheel separation accidents in Alabama include broken axles, faulty wheel installation, and hub failures.

Broken Axles

Axles are essential to a car. They feed on the power provided by the car’s transmission and transfer energy to the wheels. This exchange of energy is what makes your car move. If the axles on your car break, you won’t be able to drive the vehicle properly.

One of the most efficient ways to notice you are driving on broken axles is to pay attention to any clicking sound whenever you make a turn. This could be an indication that your car’s axles are close to failing. If you are driving at speed and your axles suddenly break, they could cause the wheels to fly off your vehicle.

Faulty Wheel Installation

Many wheel separation accidents happen as a result of improper wheel installations. This commonly occurs during inspections and tire replacements. The person installing the wheels must make sure each lug nut is safely attached to the wheel’s studs to prevent the tire from becoming loose. A loosened tire can put pressure on the studs, which could damage and eventually break them. Without support from the studs, your car’s wheels could separate from the vehicle.

Another potential problem is over-torquing. Most of the time, mechanics rely on impact tools, such as impact wrenches, for wheel installation. However, impact wrenches cannot be adjusted to a vehicle’s torque requirements. Therefore, more often than not, impact wrenches exert too much torque on the lug nuts, which could cause them to fail.

Hub Failures

Hub failures are also a common cause of wheel separation. If a hub is too tight or too loose, it can fail and lead to possible wheel separation. There are, however, red flags to let you know you have a faulty hub that needs fixing. Common warning signs of failing wheel hubs include leakage from the hub’s seals, smoke, and clicking sounds.

Common Injuries After a Wheel Separation Accident

Wheel separation accidents are extremely dangerous – not only for the defective vehicle’s occupants, but for others sharing the road. When a wheel detaches from a vehicle traveling at high speeds, it becomes a projectile capable of causing severe injuries. Some of the most common injuries after a wheel separation accident include traumatic brain injuries, whiplash, and spinal cord injuries.

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)

Traumatic brain injuries happen as a result of a massive blow to the head. TBI is among one of the most dangerous types of injuries a person can sustain. Common warning signs and symptoms of TBI include dizziness, severe headaches, trouble thinking, fatigue, and more. Long-term effects may include chronic pain, loss of mobility, memory loss, difficulty with physical coordination, and other health issues.


Whiplash is a type of neck injury that is commonly seen in most car, motorcycle, and truck accidents. It is caused by a sudden, forceful jolt leading the neck to “whip” back and forth rapidly. The resulting movement often damages the muscles around the neck area, leading to a whiplash injury. Common symptoms of whiplash include tingling sensations in the hands and fingers, neck pain, stiffness, and more. Depending on the extent of the damage, it could take weeks or months to recover.

Spinal Cord Injuries (SCI)

Spinal cord injuries are caused by damage to the spinal cord, such as the spinal cord becoming torn, punctured, or pinched during an auto accident. Spinal cord injuries often cause permanent disability from the site of the of the wound down. Generally speaking, the higher the physical location of the injury, the greater the extent of the resulting paralysis. These types of injuries frequently require costly surgical procedures, rehabilitation, and ongoing medical care.

Montgomery Car Accident Attorneys Handling Wheel Separation Injury Claims

Wheel separation accidents can lead to devastating consequences. After such an accident, you might feel hopeless and overwhelmed. However, a skilled personal injury lawyer like Rick Morrison can fight to hold the at-fault party accountable for your losses, injuries, and medical bills.

Let our decades of experience work for you while you focus on recovering from your injuries. For a free legal consultation, call the Morrison Law Firm today at (334) 625-6128, or contact us online.



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