Flying tire deaths prompt inspections
Flying tires have wreaked havoc on the roads. In the last four months, two people have died in Ontario after their vehicles were destroyed by wheels that flew off transport trucks.
Last month 69-year-old Paul Koenderman was killed on Highway 400 near Barrie when his SUV was hit by a flying tire.
In November of last year, 50-year-old Kimberly Coordes died after a similar incident on the 401 near Oxford County.
“More recently we had a wheel separation occur (Monday) in Oxford County, thankfully no one was injured,” says OPP Const. Lisa Narancsik.
These deaths and countless other incidents involving dislodged tires have prompted the Ministry of Transportation to take action.
Officials were on hand along Highway 401 in Woodstock checking tire and truck safety Tuesday. Truck driver Ron Campbell says he couldn’t agree more with safety being paramount in his career.
“The more education we get out there the better off we’re going to be in the long run. The safer the roads (will be) for everybody,” he says.
By law, drivers are required to do a daily inspection on their truck before they hit the road. Ontario’s fines for having an unsafe rig are some of the heftiest in North America.
Fines can range anywhere from $2,000 to $50,000 depending on the severity of the infraction.
“Seventy per cent of wheel offs are caused by loose ineffective fasteners on the highway,” says MTO enforcement investigator Kevin Kirkham.
The Ministry of Transportation says that many violations could be avoided by a daily inspection.